My friends are goals, your friends are faux
We fly, why cry? Our souls exposed, yeah
We smoke, we laugh, your stress, my stress
Closer than kin, I’m blessed, you blessed
“What would I be without my friends?”
That’s a line Mrs. Carter herself — Mrs. Beyonce Giselle Knowles-Carter, to be exact — sings in a song off her and her hubs new album, “Everything is Love.” Have I been listening to this album ad nauseam, every day, on repeat? Yes. Is it a bit much? Yes. Am I going to stop anytime soon? No.
I LOVE the track “Friends” on Everything is Love; a simple ode-to-your-squad anthem that outlines the importance of friendship in our lives — yes, even to the beautiful, rich and famous — and guess what, ladies? Bey needs her girls just as much as you do.
This isn’t the first friendship-related thing I’ve seen, heard or read recently that got me thinking about my own personal friendships and how they’ve grown and evolved over the years. It’s a topic I used to tackle a LOT here on ‘AA,’ but it’s been a while. The truth is, when you’re in your mid-30s, friendships change. A lot. I first saw this tweet and it made me realize perhaps the biggest and most significant change with adult friendships:
You can’t always see them anymore.
Families, kids, careers, moving further away from home, travel, usual life bullshit: it’s what our lives are all about as we get older. As a result? There’s less time to sit on a couch on a Friday night with your BFF and drink wine, order sushi and binge horrible reality TV. There aren’t always the chances for, “Hey, I’m bored, wanna run to the mall?” or even the ubiquitous text you sent in your teens/20s:
“What are we doing tonight?”
Instead, the texts look like the one listed in the tweet above. I haven’t seen my two best friends from home in an embarrassingly long time (both have moved in the past few years) so our “hangouts” are on FaceTime. Our “gossip seshes” are over the phone, early on a weekend morning. Our “check-ins” and “you goods?” are now over text message.
This is friendship in your 30s.
It’s making plans six months in advance because you know you can’t really sporadically hang out anymore.
It’s having them pop into your head throughout the week and thinking, “I need to text her,” but forgetting because you [got out of the shower/left that meeting/got in the car/had a screaming baby you needed to tend to]… and you got sidetracked.
It’s having a friendship where in some ways you drift apart because you don’t know much about their “new” life and the people/things in it, but CLOSER in some ways because you have a bond that goes back years that no one else can replicate.
It’s getting to know your friend’s kids mostly through your iPhone in photos, videos and FaceTimes.
It’s watching your friends make new friends. And maybe even feeling pangs of jealousy or sadness about that sometimes.
It’s having THE most hilarious memory pop into your head and needing to text or call them to say, “remember when…?”
It’s looking back at old pics of your crew and smiling. But then also cringing at your outfits. But then ALSO getting upset when you see how skinny you all were.
It’s beaming with pride when you see good things happening for your friends; whether you can physically be with them during it or not.
It’s also being there for them when things aren’t so good. Or very, very bad.
It’s making the effort to see the friends who still live close by — even though we all know a friend can live 15 minutes from you and you still might not see them for two months.
It’s getting really, REALLY excited when you *do* get to see your friends and realizing not a single thing has changed and even though you’ve all fundamentally changed as people, the bond you have hasn’t actually wavered at all.
THIS is friendship, and like Beyonce, I’m so grateful for mine.
[Related: The Kinda Friends You Need In Your Life]