On friendship and community

I’m currently reading bell hooks’ All About Love, which explores emotional connection in various forms – self-love, spirituality, friendship, familial love and romantic love. So far, I particularly like this sentence:

‘Loving friendships provide us with a space to experience the joy of community in a relationship where we learn to process all our issues, to cope with differences and conflict while staying connected.’

My closest friendships are ones that move seamlessly between silliness and soulfulness – from dancing in the kitchen to talking deeply about life. As well as fun, these friendships involve active listening and calling each other out on questionable choices. Friends have helped me to recognise and rectify instances when I have jumped to conclusions, given unsolicited advice, been overly self-critical or grown distant because of a romantic relationship. My self-awareness has developed partly out of being challenged by these people who know and love me.

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On kindness

Two weeks ago, I experienced a very bad Monday. I had my purse stolen on my lunch break, which led to a panic attack (in public and the office, no less). This was followed by the onset of a migraine and sickness, which in turn triggered my ongoing flare up. Ironically, I’d told myself on my walk to work that morning that it was going to be a great week. A couple of days later, still slightly in the grip of a migraine hangover, I went for a walk by the river.

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