And it dawned on me how nice it is to have people in my life who are constant and dependable. Who are always happy to hear from me or spend time with me. It takes friendships like the one I've been embroiled in lately for me to really see the stark difference. Alas, I've been here before. Several years ago, I wrote the following and it just popped into my head. It was true then and it's true now...
A true friend would never turn on you and bad mouth you to others intentionally.
True friends do not make you feel bad.
True friends do not make you jump through hoops to be their friend.
True friends appreciate you.
True friends are consistent in their behavior towards you.
True friends do not attempt to humiliate you in front of others.
True friends do not dictate the rules of the friendship.
True friends forgive.
True friends give you the benefit of the doubt.
True friends believe you and take your word for it.
True friends do not keep score.
True friends put others above themselves occasionally.
True friends encourage a balanced friendship.
True friends show up.
True friends make time for you.
True friends work at the friendship.
True friends value your time, energy, and compassion.
True friends do not use you.
True friends do not take advantage of you.
And I'd like to add...
True friends don't constantly tell you that you don't know them or understand them. If it's true, you have no business being friends in the first place. If they're just feeling frustrated and misunderstood, they take the time to explain themselves or to show you their true nature and character rather than talking over and over again. They don't make you feel like your inability to crash through their walls is a deficiency on your part.
As my friend Denise used to say, "Don't talk. Do."
Actions speak louder than words, my friends.