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Monday, 12 September 2016

Analysis of a life

I was asked to summarize a friendship. I had to write in unemotional terms how we had interacted over a decade. Not describe her as a great friend or a caring, generous, thoughtful person. Instead I had to talk about how we met and all the things we did together over that period. This task is harder than it sounds, If you are good friends, you do a lot together and it all blurs.

I found the upside to my lazy email system that results in my never deleting emails. I had plenty of emails to date stamp events. Weekends away, dinners and parties. Shared school and kids sport experiences. Obviously photos are a clue, but you do so much more together than you bother to photograph.

It was also odd the things you remember - not the event so much but the kooky conversation that took place, or an event that you weren't at but were told about excitedly after the fact. I knew her overseas holidays but had no timeline to them, as I was remembering our excited conversations in the lead up to the trip or looking at photos on her return. Our memories are not the clear history book we think it is, but as vague as poetry, an anthology jumbled together.

It amazed me how entwined our lives had been, and over such a long time. She's not even someone I would consider one of my oldest friends. In our heads we think we are living our own lives, but with a lot of our friendships, we are constantly sharing experiences. 


Friendship marks a life..."friendship is never anything but sharing." 

It made me realise how lucky I was to have such wonderful people in my life, people who've been walking beside me for a long time.

Have you ever had to analyze a friendship?

Linking with #Openslather

15 comments:

  1. Can't say I've ever had to analyze a friendship, but it would be an interesting exercise. I love that quote though, beautiful.

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  2. I don't think I have ever done this, except maybe going over friendships that have come to a sudden halt and wondering how it had come to this... ... man, that is a great quote from Mark Twain... I've just had an email from an old pal in the UK whom I've been planning to email this week - all our togetherness was years ago but I hope we can make some new memories in the future.

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  3. I have never done this but love your reflections and quote!

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  4. I left my best friends behind when I moved cities (and one is now in NZ) so we really mostly communicate by email cos I'm not one to call. My NZ friend rings me often but mostly it's all done by text and in writing. I actually find it quite cathartic sometimes as I sit down to write to the girls and share stuff that's on my mind, in a way that would be different in person.

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  5. I had to do a similar thing I suppose when my friend was moving back to Australia with her British husband. I had to talk about how long we'd known each other, in what capacity, etc etc. Going through old emails definitely helped with dates :)

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    1. Mine is for a similar reason. It's a very odd exercise, isn't it?

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  6. Never, but what an interesting exercise! I love that quote to and think that 'sharing' is the perfect way to consider a friendship.

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  7. Have never really thought about this like that but subconsciously i have prob done this with a few friendships. #teamIBOT

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  8. No I haven't had to do this as yet. But I too have a lazy email system so I'm hoping that can come to my rescue should I be called on to do this in future!

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  9. That's an interesting way to look at a friendship!

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  10. No I've never had to do it, but I bet it would be an interesting exercise. I have a memory like a sieve though, so I'm not sure how good I'd be!

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  11. I've never had to do that. If I had to do it about my best friend it would take a while! I'd find it really hard to do without all the adjectives about what type of person she is. We've had such a long friendship, and still continue to catch up at least weekly with our 4.30 drinks in a nice wine bar/cafe every Sunday!!

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  12. I recently had to analyse a friendship...a very long and very close one...and wasn't that happy with what I came to realise. And I think I can say now that the friendship is over. It's a shame, but I guess if marriages can grow apart, why can't friendships? Sometimes life takes us in too different a direction and the gap is unbridgeable. My BEST FRIEND on the other hand remembers so many more of our experiences and things we've done where as I am flat out remembering what we did last week? I hope my friends don't ever ask me to do this exercise! ;-)

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  13. I am buggered, I like a clean inbox and am forever deleting emails. Facebook would probably help me with a timeline to an extent, along with my wavering memory.

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  14. I have never had to do that but I have given people references and testimonies so sometimes having 'old' records helps. I'm not an email keeper. I do flag what I think I might need again but generally I like a clean in box

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