Framily Matters

For the last 20+ years, I’ve lived in two different big cities (Los Angeles and New York). I’m totally a city dweller, I just love the buzz, the convenience, the access to culture and fun, opportunities, and the variety of personalities and backgrounds.

Of course with all the positives, comes one major downside: transience. For reasons of finances, opportunities, family changes/expansions and more, people tend to come and go in these towns and as a result, I’ve had to say some pretty difficult goodbyes to some very close, long-time friends. True framily–friends you choose to be family–members.

It sucks.

But it also drives home how very important and meaningful connection is. For me, it’s so deeply valuable, it feeds and nurtures my heart and soul and grounds me in the world.

Recently, the last of our very close longtime friends left NYC, and I won’t lie, I’ve been pretty blue about it. Funnily (and strangely), the very day after their moving truck pulled out, I received a lovely note from a different friend of over 20 years who sent me a memory and a link to a favorite song to let me know she was thinking of and missing ME. Of course, that made me feel so very loved and held, and altogether better. What a gift.

Social media has made it easy to be in touch, although often too peripherally. Don’t forget to really connect, here are some suggestions to get there:

  1. Take a page out of my friend’s book and share a song or a different sense memory, for example a recipe. My cousin sends me my favorite cookies sometimes.
  2. Schedule phone or video chats. Make the most out of modern tech, and TALK to the ones you love. So often I hang up feeling so full and fulfilled, and will catch myself chuckling long after the call has finished. Priceless.
  3. Make plans to rendezvous when you can. I wrote a post recently about this. Knowing that I have a date on the calendar, even if it’s way in the future, to connect in person and spend time feels awesome.

Let’s face it, maintaining friendships that matter always takes effort. The type of effort changes when the relationship relocates, but remember the relationship is still there for you. The trick is figuring out what ways you best feel connected.

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