Does any one of us actually need expert advice on friendship? To Now Enjoy All Things most neat women truly understand the value of those most important relationships. One of our favorite expressions, "Joy shared is doubled, sorrow shared is halved," speaks to the power of strong friendships.
As we hurdle along through life, often growing increasingly frenetic in our pace and disconnected by distractions so common to every day living, we let some things slip away or wither from lack of attention. There are metaphors aplenty that illustrate the importance of "nurturing" the people in our lives in the same way we would plant, fertilize and water a garden. We could stock a large library with the volumes of cliches on the topics of friends and friendship.
As we looked around for illuminating insights and worthwhile wisdom we were fairly dazzled by the selection…..both the size and content! What we would like to offer you is an opportunity for reflection, a thoughtful perspective and of course, a chance to laugh….that is after all the stated purpose of Neat Women Inc! As "women of a certain age," let's celebrate the friendships of the women in our lives-those people, some of whom we may now have a long history with, and all who are the "safety net" in that balancing act called living.
Perhaps a useful exercise is to pause for a moment and not only "stop and smell the roses" but quietly contemplate the space in our lives for camaraderie
..that parcel of land where friendships can grow. Do we tend it well? Are we mindful of the need for adequate sunshine and moisturethe light a smile bequeaths, the tears of joy or sorrow we could share? Do we provide nourishmentsuch as time and consideration? Are we truly vigilant about providing proper care?
We've called upon our resident, "Janie Appleseed," our own Eve, and asked her to lead the way to the Neat Women Inc Friendship Garden.
Cutting is prohibited but you are encouraged to dig up something to take with you for your own glorious grove of friends.
"Friends are the flowers we plant in our souls." EVErywoman
All we ask is that you mind it well and pass along the harvest it reaps.
"May you have a good sowing / And a gallant crop; / May your weeds never begin, / Your flowers never stop; / May your radishes be bright, / Your new potatoes succulent, / Your leeks all gentleness, / your roses truculent." Marie de L. Welch
From, In The Company of Women by Brenda Hunter, Ph.D.,
Friends. Relationships. For women that's what life's about. We are relational beings. As such, we almost always put our relationships with husbands, children, and friends above ambition and material gain. Yet the evidence is that our life-nourishing relationships are being eroded today as we live frenetic, time-pressured lives. Moreover, we have just come through three decades when women's friendships, along with the coffee klatch, have been trivialized and denigrated.
But I believe a sea of change in values and attitudes is coming. I believe we are witnessing the beginning of a grass-roots movement among women in churches and communities across America, affirming the importance of women friendships-to the woman herself, to her family, to her nation. As my friend Linda LeSourd Lader reminded us in a speech to a women's group, 'If mama ain't happy, ain't nobody happy.' And there are lots of mamas, and single women, who know intuitively that they need richer, deeper relationships with their mothers, daughters, and friends for their psychological well being. And there's a battalion of young women in this culture who desperately yearn for relationships with older women as mentors." (We suspect that view is shared by women in many nations around the globe.)
(We suspect that view is shared by women in many nations around the globe.)
"The kiss of the sun for pardon, / The song of the birds for mirth, -- / One is nearer God's heart in a garden / Than anywhere else on earth." Dorothy Frances Gurney
Children need roots and wings to thrive; friends require roots alone and the wings to us they provide." EVErywoman
Take a voyage on "The Friend Ship"