friendshipSmileNotes By Sharon Scott, LPC, LMFT – It’s been said that some people come into our lives for a reason, others for a season…

And a special few for a lifetime. I’ve had some of all three types and treasure each one for that contribution to a chapter of my life (or to the whole book!).

One person that came into my life for a reason happened in the year when my beloved father, two dear aunts and four close friends all died the same year. She was my swimming teacher. I don’t know why I took on the challenge to finally learn to swim that difficult year, but I did. Some days she literally just pulled me through the water as I cried. Marilee really helped me during a time when I was struggling­ in more ways than just learning to swim.

I met Liz shortly after college while walking my cocker spaniel Shannon. Being an avid dog lover, she would tear out of her apartment to come pet him. We finally introduced ourselves to one another and a fabulous friendship of thirty years developed and continues to grow. She will be in my life for a lifetime.

In this overly busy, technologically filled world in which we live it’s all too easy to forego communication or communicate solely by brief text, twitter or e-mail. I’ve actually seen teens texting one other as they sat side by side.

Friends need to be tended to like we would care for a beautiful plant that produces gorgeous flowers. Personal conversations, telephone calls and, yes, even snail mail are needed to truly cherish a friend. I remember in college receiving long letters on beautiful stationery from friends and relatives­, even boyfriends (although theirs was usually not on beautiful paper!). I treasured those letters­and still have some of them. Wonderful memories are contained within.

When I was a toddler, my mother and father were renting a house while saving to buy a new home. Three doors down was another couple who had a daughter the same age as me, Jamie, as well as a baby named Donna. The mothers initially became friends,­ then the children ­then the fathers. These two families became so close that they bought homes a year later next door to one another. The fathers have both died, the mothers and the girls still occasionally communicate even though they live many states apart.

Moral to the stories: treasure and nurture your friends. It’s a wonderful example to set for your children.

Copyright © 2014, Sharon Scott. No reproduction without written permission from author.

P. S. Please see my other column The Counselor’s Corner on helping your child manage the peer pressure of copying homework.

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