Today we have the pleasure of introducing two firsts for HerStories: a giveaway and a powerful poem about friendship.
First, my partner Stephanie and I would like to thank friendship expert, Shasta Nelson, for offering us a copy of her book as a giveaway. Shasta is the founder of GirlfriendCircles.com, a girlfriend matching site. Recently, Shasta has been featured on the Katie Couric show and Today Show, discussing GirlfriendCircles.com and her new book:
Friendships Don’t Just Happen!: The Guide to Creating a Meaningful Circle of GirlFriends
To enter the giveaway to win a copy of Friendships Don’t Just Happen!, leave a comment (any comment!) with this week’s HerStories essays on this site or at Stephanie‘s site. We’ll choose a comment that was posted between today, Wednesday, March 27 to next Wednesday, April 3 on either site. We’d love to hear about what you think about the friendship story or hear about a friendship of your own! We’ll announce the winner on Monday, April 8th.
According to Shasta, we all need five types of friends, and she describes them as five “circles of connectedness.” These circles run on a continuum from the most casual friends to deeper bonds that grow with greater intimacy and regular contact.
This week’s HerStories writer is Wendy Heckert, and she is looking for what Shasta describes as a “committed” friend, the closest and strongest type of friendship.
Here is Wendy’s introduction to her poem:
When asked to think about a significant female friendship, I am drawn to this poem I wrote a few years ago. This is a sensitive topic for me, for I have struggled with developing and sustaining a close female friendship. I have always wanted that best friend, the one you could trust with anything, the one you could always call, the one who would always have your back. This type of friendship is special. The previous “HerStories” exemplify the beautiful nature of a close female friend. It is different than having a spouse or a parent. It is a unique connection between two women that is empowering. For various reasons, I have been unsuccessful in this quest. This is not to say I have never had a female friend. Just that many of these friendships did not last or would not meet the criteria as positively significant. In fact, their undesirable significance led me to write this poem. Nonetheless, I do have female friends for whom I am truly grateful. Still, I remain wondering if I will ever find someone who “loves me friendly.”
Love Me Friendly
I have this recurring conversation
With myself as if I were talking to you
Who asked me to unravel the layers of
Pain regarding friendships lost.
It strikes me as pathetic, maybe even comical,
That at such an age I am still plagued by
The desire to be loved friendly.
Felt like a fool repeatedly as I learned
My title of Friend was in fact Acquaintance.
There is a difference between the two, you know.
A friend pulls you out of hibernation so you get fresh air,
And won’t allow you to become so comfortable you forget
To live; she does not toss aside your cares, even
When correspondences lag.
Maybe this perception is what kept people
At such a distance, an unspoken expectation,
One that became too cumbersome to bear.
Oh, how I wanted to find someone who dared
To delight in my passions, accept my insecurities,
Empathize with my melancholy, and join me in daily laughter.
When I did, was it possible I was not good enough for them?
At what age in life does one stop worrying about
Friendship in its variety of forms?
At what age does one cease protection from
Friendship’s potential to do harm?
At what age will I stop returning to this
Conversation where I pick apart the layers
Of sorrowful regret that I do not know how it truly feels to be
Wendy Heckert and her family live in New York. She is completing her Ed.D in Curriculum and Teaching from Boston University. She works diligently to teach her children how to be a good friend. Her blog is called the Melodies of Mommyhood.
We would love to read and share your story of friendship. Please write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions, stories, or ideas.
Don’t forget to leave a comment below to enter the giveaway! Do you have a friend who “loves you friendly”? Do you hope for one?