Sunday, September 8, 2013

The Best Friendemic

Just a few of the people who bring smiles to my heart around the world...
and whose pictures just happened to be handy on my computer.
I have this problem.  You see, I have too many amazing friends.  I’ve been assured that this is normal for my lifestyle – you know, one where I out of necessity develop close relationships in a variety of cities, states, and countries around the world.  But, at the same time, it makes conversations difficult at times.

Last night, my roommate was told “you can’t have that many best friends!”  Well, maybe not best friends, but she’s a lot like me.  Once you’ve lived overseas, moved a few times, and have lived in various places, especially as a single, it gets to be a bit complicated.  I remember arriving in Kalamazoo last year on furlough and realizing that, at that moment, I had amazing friends in cities all over the world, but not a single close friend that I could call to go to dinner.  (A couple of friends from Kalamazoo were away, but still.  It was lonely.) 

I’m not saying that I need more friends – nor that I don’t want any more.  It’s just a weird phenomenon.  And, it’s typical, from what I read.  In the book Third Culture Kids, it talks about how many kids who have grown up overseas have a FB friend list a mile long and how they realize at some point that they just can’t keep up with them all like they want to.  It’s sad – missing out on the lives of those with whom you’ve grown close.  And it’s amazing – realizing that you’ve gotten to meet and be a small part of this many amazing people’s lives!  It’s hard, to continue to get close when you know it’ll end in goodbye.  And it’s easy – to fall into close relationships quickly when you’re surrounded by stressful difficulties and need to lean on one another for everything from medicine to bug spray to food to a place to go and cry on someone’s shoulder. 

It’s weird.  It’s crazy.  It’s life.  My life.  And while there are many times when I’ve asked, “who decided this was a good idea, anyway?” I can honestly say that most days, I’m incredibly thankful for the journey God has put me on.  And more than anything, I am reminded that my home – my real home – is in heaven, where tears and goodbyes will be finished and I’ll get to worship around the throne with my 394 best friends – and a million other amazing people I never got the chance to meet – from all around the world! :)

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