I don’t know where this idea came from, but many people are under the impression that a person can only have one best friend. Maybe it’s because we use the word “best” as the number one spot in many other things in life – the best parking spot, the best seat in the house, etc. I have honestly struggled with this classification process of my friends and I don’t think I’m alone in this….
I had a conversation earlier this year with my 5 year old that actually ended up solving some things in this category for me. Imagine that! Parenting – so weird how it changes us!
Here’s how it happened….
Ethan: Mommy, Harlen wants to be my best friend, but I really want to be Christian’s best friend, and sometimes I want to be Robbie’s and Heath’s best friend, too, but I kinda still want to be Harlen’s best friend, too. And I’m always gonna be best friends with Reece because he was my first best friend!
Me: I know, hun, sometimes we have more than one best friend at a time.
Ethan: Yes – he will always be my best friend because he’s my cousin!
Me: Yes, that’s great, honey. Harlen, Christian, Robbie, and Heath probably all want to be your best friend, and we already know that Reece is your best friend, but why don’t you just have lots of best friends?
Ethan: Are you sure that I can have more than one?
Me: I am sure it’s okay!
Ethan: Okay, I think I will….
Immediately I flashed back to a day as a young girl when I wondered how the heck I was going to pick out and categorize my best friend, my next best friend, etc. I think I was in 6th grade and the cliques were forming rapidly. I had a set of church friends and a set of school friends and got very confused going back and forth who I liked more. I never figured it out then. I kept pushing it off to figure it out another day. I eventually moved and by default my church friends became my best friends.
After having this conversation with Ethan, I realize I am able to make up my own mind about who and what type of friends I have and they don’t have to stay the same all the time. They can grow and change and get better through the years. Here is my best friend list, because I am a list addict and must keep lists of everything in life to remain sane (yes – it’s a real thing!).
Jesus is my ultimate best friend of course –
Of course – as a christian, Jesus Christ is always the bestest of my best friends because he is my savior and King. This is my list, if you do not like that, go make your own list 🙂
Soulmate best friend – Then my hubby is my soulmate best friend . I know that not every marriage is made up of two best friends, but I have been blessed beyond imagination with my husband, whom I don’t just love, I actually like him and enjoy spending time with him in addition to the romantic side of love! (what a concept, huh?).
Then I have a group of best friends and none of them are “bester” than the others – just different depending on what’s going on in life :
Sister best friend: We are sadly not close geographically, but we try to email/IM/text or call whenever possible. We were frenemies growing up for a while because she liked to copy me (as most younger siblings do) and I liked to hide from her with my cousin so that she was not able to have a playmate. We started growing closer when I had to start driving her to school every day and then we were soon giggling at all hours of the night and sharing clothing instead of stealing it. Who knew that God gave me a built-in bestie right in my home?
Cousin/more like a sister best friend: We were tight from the beginning because our mommies were great friends and sisters. We played for hours outside long before cell phones, computers, or ipads ever existed. We planned out elaborate schemes together at church camp and spent hours laughing at youth group, in camping tents, on a trampoline, in a pool, or huddling behind the deck hiding (again) from my sister and congratulating each other on a great new hiding spot (Sorry sis – we’ve come so far and promise not to pick on you anymore!). She is famous for making me shoot every kind of pop out my nose and making me laugh during serious prayer time (apparently not appreciated in Sunday School). We can not see each other daily like we used to just because of crazy schedules, but she still knows my heart, knows how to make me laugh and hold me when I cry. Our children have become best buddies as well, which is fun to experience!
Stick together at work best friends: No matter where you work, you have to have some girlfriends that know what the tough days are like. They cry with you when your personal life spills over into your work, or when that rude customer yelled at you again when you did not change every policy on the books just to please her. This friend managed to get you a box of Kleenex when you couldn’t walk out of your office to the bathroom. She takes you out to lunch for your bday. She helps you figure out what the heck that email is saying because it looks like it is in Japanese and Spanish and Russian. She helps you to make sense of people who really don’t make sense on a daily basis. (As we say “Common sense is not so common anymore”). She is there for bouncing off ideas and for patting your back when you try, but you don’t really have the best ideas.
Church/Prayer partner best friend: This girl has faith like a rock and tends to have strong faith when you are weak and you tend to have strong faith when she is weak. We all need one of these supporters in life. Whether you are a Christian or not even the slightest bit religious – you need a sister friend who at least believes in you! My prayer partner best friend always seems to know what to say when my faith is shaky and always knows how to pray when I don’t have the words. She sometimes needs to turn to me and somehow God gives me the words when I have no words of encouragement at the time. It is a necessary and amazing friendship that I am so thankful for!
Fellow mommy best friend: For you mommas out there – if you don’t have any mommy buddies – you need to get some! My mommy best friends are sometimes at work, sometimes at church, sometimes in my neighborhood. You are especially blessed when you have a mommy best friend who has slightly older children than you who has been through the sleepless nights and the “worries about nothings that might be somethings” phases that we go through as mommies. She drops everything and comes over to help out when you need her. Although life gets crazy and you don’t always have time for mommy night outs, you somehow stay in touch and pick back up right where you left off last time.
Workout partner best friend: Sometimes my workout buddies work out with me. Sometimes they just encourage me from afar when our schedules do not line up. Either way, we can talk about weight loss, we can talk about battles with health or self-image, we can talk about anything in a women’s locker room, right? It is especially beneficial for me to have a fellow Christian workout partner because she believes that we both can do ALL things through Christ who gives us strength!
These are just some examples of the many best friends that can pop up at any point in your life! These are where my biggest blessings and best friends have shown up, but yours could be different!