A friend of mine is pregnant - a bit surprising to her. She has a 16-year-old, a 13-year-old and an eight-year-old. Needless to say, not a stitching of baby anything is left in her house. She put the word out that she is looking for anything and everything. Coincidentally, my sister just bought a new house and is getting rid of things from the old one. One of the possessions was a crib. I spoke to my sister and her husband one day and said if it was still available I would take the crib for Marlena.
My always-funny-to-himself brother-in-law wondered if she was a good enough friend to lend the crib to. He jokingly asked, "Is she the type of friend who would come over and scrub your toilet for you?" (Assuming if I am sick or in the hospital or something... not just because it is cleaning day.)
Without thinking, I answered, "Yes." Then I stopped and thought about it. In his own funny way, my brother-in-law opened my eyes a bit. Just where is that line that deems a good friend?
I have friends whom I tell everything to; I have friends who do everything for me and vice versa; I have friends whom I work with on committees and clubs; I have friends whom I haven't talked to in years but I know I can call up in an instant if need be. At different stages in your life you also have different needs from your friends - you have the going-out friends, the shopping friends, the crafty friends, the confiding friends... maybe a mix for a few. Heck, if anything this blog has taught me is that I don't even have to meet people to have their friendship - I consider my blog pals "friends" too.
But now, with this "new" definition of friendship - "someone who would scrub your toilet for you" - maybe we need to rethink a couple of those people. After all, life is pretty short. We should spend our time with those who matter the most.
I believe I have a good number of people whom I think would scrub my toilet. I think they are the same people with whom I have been able to rely on over the years, especially this past year with Brady. They are the same people whose toilets I would also scrub, if need be.