(Do you find it easy to make new friends? Tell us how you’ve mastered the art of befriending a new person.)
There are two ways to look at this one. The whiney, demanding way is of no appeal whatsoever. There is an “all about me” attitude in that appeal that seems to imply that you must be friends with that person; if you refuse, then you’re bad. Nowhere is it written that everyone I meet will become my BFF.
The top picture, however holds a lot of appeal for me. Huge dog fully capable of having the kitten as a snack; adorable and, let’s assume brave instead of stupid, kitten offering friendship at the risk of his own safety. Now we have something we can work with!
For me, making friends is a process, not an event. It’s a two-way street, not “My Way Only.” It starts with an almost instant hint of recognition with the other person, a certain something that draws me in and makes me want to go back. There is a light in the eye, a kindred spirit that speaks to my spirit. Without any real effort, a bond begins to develop. Not too fast, though. When I meet someone who declares undying friendship within five minutes of hello, I’m pretty sure I won’t be seeing that person again.
There is a mutual interest. There are mutually enjoyed activities, beliefs, talents—something that we both share. Sometimes it’s my rather wry and cynical sense of humor that connects quickly with the other person’s. I have a friend going back over 35 years. We don’t see each other much any more because of distance, but when we do meet, there is that thing with the eyes that lets us both know nothing has been lost.
I’m not a person who needs a huge circle of friends. I value the friends I have who understand that. I work with people all week in whom I invest a great deal of emotional and spiritual energy. When I’m finished with my work week, I want to spend time with a friend who has the ability to laugh with me over nonsense. I want to unwind. We can be serious, and will say that all my closest friends are fully able to do serious. We all share a love of God, love of country, love of family and friends. When we talk, the conversation ranges all over the map and it’s all good.
I think I’m rambling. This is supposed to be the art of making friends with someone new. Well, no, not rambling. I just went back and read what I’ve already written, and I’m done.