Learn the value of friendship before the latter stages in lifeWe all cherish our friendships. They are one of life’s most pleasant aspects. I learned a few days some sad news about a long, long time friend.
By: Bernie Hughes, Superior Telegram
We all cherish our friendships. They are one of life’s most pleasant aspects. I learned a few days some sad news about a long, long time friend. I met this individual when we were both elementary school kids in the Lucas Valley Elementary School, nine miles west of Menomonie, Wis.
He lived less than a mile north of the school and I about that far South so we were in many community activities such a winter skiing and summer ball. When we left home, we went separate ways but had get-togethers when either of us was near the other’s location.
Why am I questioning myself now and wondering if you have ever had the same experience that I’m having. It is true that actions speak louder than words, but do we think to say those words when they could be said?
I hope you do; I know I didn’t in this case and others.
From what I’ve read, men have this problem more often than women. Maybe that is why I’ve looked at a poem written by Laura Pembrook several times since that e-mail:
Your friendship is a golden chain
Extending down the years;
Some links are joined in laughter
And others forged by tears,
But even as the years go by
Its shining length still grows,
A bond of treasured memories
That old acquaintance knows.
I assume that my old friend did know how much his friendship meant to me, but that doesn’t completely satisfy the guilt portion lurking in my conscience. Why didn’t I ever come out — face-to-face — and tell him? Have you ever had that experience?
Some thoughts I’ve had that may trigger others with you. We sort of take friendships for granted. Maybe a genuine friendship is like good health; its real value isn’t truly known until it is lost. We know throughout the passage of years that friendship isn’t something to merely get; it is in big part, something to give. Why don’t we remember to give those words life until the other life is gone?
Who are those friends who we should remember to express our appreciation? They are the ones that you have learned to confide in with the sure knowledge that your confidences will be kept? They accept or overlook our faults, just as we do theirs. They are the ones that you can count on to do exactly what they say they are going to do.
I hope that I am able to tell other friends — the list is getting short — what I appreciate about our friendships over the long haul that withstood a good share of life of good and bad luck.
Bernie Hughes, Ed.D, is a retired educator who resides in Superior. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.