Someone once told me that friendships are like flowers; they have to be nurtured in order to blossom. He then went on to say that friendships are also similar to flowers in the sense that they can die easily. He was very high when he said this, but I thought it was genuinely insightful.
I’m proud to say I’ve nurtured my relationships with a lot of care and attention over the years, and have clung on to most of the same people since I was very young. A full flower bed of friends, you could say.
The few that I have lost along the way simply weren’t meant to be and that’s OK. Sometimes friendships fizzling out makes space for something new to grow. I’ll stop with the gardening analogies now.
Since I was a kid, I’ve had a strict rule in place for myself. I call this the five finger best friend policy. This means I only ever have five proper best friends at one time, one for each finger. It’s worked pretty well for me – I can fit that amount of friends into my schedule just fine, and it’s handy for going as the Mystery Gang for Halloween (if you include Scrappy Doo, of course). There’s no science behind this theory, but when I was at school, there was a scary tough kid who hung out on the green by the estate. Everyone called him Johnny Two Fingers, and he didn’t have many friends. That’s all I’m saying.
A significant friendship that I failed to maintain was my first one with a guy, Will. We met in the communal playground for our block of flats when we were five and became fast friends. I kept this relationship going for the best part of eight years, because we had quite a lot in common: loving the CBBC show MI High, for one, and wearing a hell of a lot of Mini Boden, not to mention we shared the same postcode. Unfortunately, after MI High was cancelled, he went to uni and we moved out of kids’ clothes, there wasn’t much left to base our friendship on.
I should probably also mention that he took his GCSE’s three years early because he was insanely clever. We definitely didn’t have that in common. Will is now one of the top computer data analysts in the UK, while I’m desperate to get on Big Brother. You do the math.
If you have recently been bereaved of a friendship, you could always try and rekindle a lost one. I’m not saying it’ll always be worth it, but it is definitely worth a shot. I recently made plans to see an old friend I met during my time in the St John Ambulance Cadets (that’s a story for another time). I’m no longer a budding first responder, and I don’t wear the stripes of a corporal on my shoulder. After one catch-up drink, we decided it might be best not to have a second. TTYN.
Do you remember that acronym? It stands for “talk to you never” from Paris Hilton’s New Best Friend, the 2008 TV show where she held, you guessed it, a new best friend competition. Contestants went through a series of challenges to win the ultimate prize: being part of the heiress’ inner circle. Maybe you could do the same, if you’ve got a spot to fill.
It’ll always be a shame to lose contact with a companion, but try to focus on those you’ve got now – the ones who’ been there for the long run and still love you anyway. TTYL.