“Each friend represents a world in us, a world possibly not born until they arrive, and it is only by this meeting that a new world is born.” –Anais Nin
I count myself extremely fortunate as a human being because I have always been blessed with amazing friends. I consider them, quite literally, angels in my life. I dedicate this piece to all the friends that have crossed my path. They have added meaning to my life and helped shape me into the person that I am today. Some friends have come and gone and some are lifetime sisters and brothers. I am grateful to have been touched by each and every one of them.
Friends make life FUN! I treasure the hundreds, the thousands of memories I have with friends over the years. From small kid time climbing the mango tree in the backyard with our favorite neighbors to night picnics at Ala Moana beach with the sugas from the hood, from cruises through Waikiki to getting ready for single adult dances, I’ve had so many good times. I’ve had adventures with friends in foreign countries, sang next to my girls on stage in front of thousands of people, watched them walk down the aisle, thrown baby showers and piled into a car of girls on our way to scope out the ‘other woman’. I can’t imagine how uneventful my life would be without my friends!
Friends are my form of therapy. I can’t count the number of hours and days that I’ve spent laughing, venting, gossiping, bawling, eating, singing, talking story, going out, sharing secrets and sometimes arguing with my friends. When I’ve had a crappy day, when I’m exhausted, frustrated, irritated, elated, naughty or bored, I can always depend on my “friend therapy”.
Friends come in different packages. There are some people you can’t imagine ever being friends with who become your friends, some that you strike up a connection with immediately and some that were just always meant to be in your life. I have always enjoyed the refreshing variety of my friendships. I’ve been blessed to have married a friend that I met at age 12. We’ve enjoyed over twenty years of friendship and love. I love the sugas I grew up with in church, my Na Wai sisters, my best friend who was like an older sister to me, the friends I met in college and the friends who have become like family in my adult years.
In my life, angels have also manifested in the form of four-legged companions. These heavenly creatures have provided unwavering loyalty, unconditional love and the ability to absolutely change my mood and my day around. They have an intuitive gift for knowing when I need comfort, kisses and canine comic relief. I’ve fallen asleep curled up next to these guardians that have watched over myself, my family and my home day after day and year after year.
Friends offer salvation. Sometimes that salvation arrives in the form of a 2 a.m. text that simply says, “I’m here for you, sis”. It may arrive as an email, a timely phone call, a spontaneous visit, a midnight dessert run, a mid-week lunch, a movie night or a Skype session. In days of sorrow, my friends have been a light in the overwhelming darkness of despair. These angels without wings have held me up in their prayers, their faith, their thoughts and their words of encouragement, compassion and love.
Sometimes I ask myself how I’ll ever be able to repay my friends for everything they’ve done for me. My attempts at reciprocity seem feeble in comparison and so I rely on the grace of God to provide blessings and protection that are befitting these angels on earth.
Whether they are five minutes or 5,000 miles away, my friends are always near and dear to my heart. Whatever form they may take: a spouse of two decades, four-legged fur balls, the girls in the band, an international beauty, a six foot center, the sistahs from da hood, the college crew or a BFF that has become my guardian angel in heaven, I thank God everyday for my friends. May I strive to emulate the kind of friendship that these angels on earth have always shown to me. . .