One of the most beautiful things about true friendship is that you are able to be yourself in a safe environment without judgement or consequences. This includes both good and bad situations that may happen in our every day life. Never was that more evident for me than with three of my friends over the past week.
I have mentioned in the past that I love the game of Mah Jongg. I learned to play about a year and half ago, play in several groups regularly and whenever I have the opportunity to play with my out of town friends. I am somewhat competitive by nature, well maybe very competitive and who doesn’t like to win? However, in this game it is so possible to get into a slump that lasts for weeks, which often causes you to question your own playing ability and even gets to the point where you start to question whether you want to even play at all. Then all of the sudden the slump passes and play returns to normal.
However, playing this past weekend I took slump to a whole new level. I am not sure exactly how many games we played, but suffice it to say a lot. Let’s say it was 30, and out of those thirty one member of trio won at least 25 (which is unheard of), three to the second member and two for yours truly. Add that to my recent slump and all those doubts and fears of being able to play the game came rushing in like a Tsunami, which did not make for a wonderful mood. I had a similar experience earlier in the week at one of my regular weekly one on one games and had convinced myself that I was just fooling around. But after this episode I decided maybe that wasn’t the case. My mood was neither comfortable for me or for my friends who had to endure.
The beautiful thing about friendships is that when you have those sour moments true friends allow you to be you and accept you for who you are warts and all. In doing so, they provide you a safe environment to acknowledge your actions, talk about it and make way for self reflection that gives you the opportunity to address it both externally and and internally and move on. The inner soul searching that comes from being able to be open and honest provides you the opportunity to be true not only to yourself, but to your friendships as well. This doesn’t apply to just the game of Mah Jongg, but to our every day lives as well.
So L and F and B, thank you for giving me the opportunity to be me without judgement and reservation. It is the fact that we are true friends that helps me build the foundation of a better friendship. You remind me that it is OK to lose and in the end it’s not about me or my abilities, but rather the true luck of the draw. True friendships have healing power and I appreciate that power more than you will ever know. When you have those moments with your friends, see them for what they are, learn from them and let them go. That is how the foundation for true, long lasting relationships are formed.
Have a great day and remember to be the reasons someone smiles.