Thursday, February 4, 2016

Friendships by Tara Randel



                                                  Friendship Royalty Free Stock Photos

I was thinking about a friend of mine the other day and realized how fortunate I am to have more than one good friend in my life. Friends come in a variety of ways, we never know where or when we might click with a person, but the bottom line is, friendships are irreplaceable. For most of us, friendships are essential. I’m sure you can relate to one or more of the friendships you’ve cultivated in your own life, but here are a few. 

Lifetime. I’m sure everyone has that one friend you’ve keep in contact with since you were a kid. They know everything about you; the good, bad and ugly. They know all about your first crush or remember the unfortunate fashion choices from high school. The bond with a lifetime friend is strong, comfortable and priceless.

Long-distance. How about those friend who live thousands of miles away? Yet somehow we stay tuned into their lives. One of my long-distance friends is also my lifetime friend. We may not see each other very often, but we keep up with cards, yearly visits and a phone call or text. When we do see I each other? It’s like no time has passed and we fall into that easy camaraderie. 

Family. Some might consider a sibling, a child  or parent as among your true friends. For me, my husband is my best friend. Not only do we love each other, but we have fun together. I couldn’t imagine traveling this journey without him.

Work. Oh, those friends who are with us every day at work. They hear about the kids and school and family and everything else going on currently in our lives. They are there when we need a breather, someone to listen to us at lunchtime or just simply to socialize with. Yep, they know a lot about us too. 

And for those of us who work at home? Well, I’m going to have to brag on my author friends right here. The Heartwarming authors are a very supportive group of women. I’ve had the privilege of meeting many of you at RWA conferences, or worked with you on different projects. Yes, we love what we do, but because this is a solitary occupation, we need that network of friends in this industry. Some of you I haven’t met face-to-face, only through email, but I still feel that strong bond. 

I have two friends locally who have been writing for years and we still get together regularly to chat, not only about our personal lives, but about the craft. I still go to them to brainstorm or call them when I have story difficulties. I treasure them. 

Then there is my critique partner, Karen Rock, who I met when we started emailing after the Heartwarming series first launched. We became friends, then started working together and call each other if we've hit a snag in a plot. I’m so very grateful for our friendship. 

Church or organizations. Everyone likes to belong and help others. I have a strong network of friends at church who help me through the joyful times in life, as well as the lowest. Whether you attend a church or are involved in the community, it’s the like-minded connection that we can depend upon and grow with.

I’m sure you could think of many other types of friendships you value in your lives. Truly, friendships are a gift we should never take for granted. Call a friend, hug a buddy or email with someone who is important in your life. When you think about it, how could we get along without those wonderful friends in our lives?

Tara Randel is an award-winning,USA TODAY bestselling author of eleven novels. She is currently working on new stories for Harlequin Heartwarming, as well as a new mystery series. Her next Heartwarming, The Bridal Bouquet, is part of The Business of Weddings series and will be released in June 2016. Visit Tara at www.tararandel.com. Like her on Facebook at Tara Randel Books

22 comments:

  1. Friendships are an important part of life. I've known one of my friends for almost 41 years now. Your post just reminded me that I need to reach out to a long distance friend that I haven't heard from in a while. Thanks for reminding me.

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  2. Thanks for reminding me. I have several friends who aren’t connected to the computer, and I need to send them a snail mail. I agree with all the categories you listed as well as how important friendships are. Nice post.

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  3. My longest friendship is 42 years. We met in the neighborhood where we grew up, when we were 8 years old. Whenever we talk or get together it's as though we're still those goofy girls. :) Thanks for reminding us the value of our friendships, Tara.

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    1. Sounds awesome. That's how I feel abut my childhood friend!

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  4. Tara, great post. Having grown up in a small community where all of the kids my age went all through school together. We still keep in touch. And we have one go-to member that updates everyone if anything happens where we need to send encouragement or sympathy cards. I've looked at those relationships as lifelines. And I have friends from a variety of jobs as we moved around the country with Denny's careers. I still maintain contact with several people from each place. And writer friends are amazing. Both the ones you see and those met at conferences, but where we touch base by email. Lastly, since I've been writing for a lot of years, I've acquired "reader friends". I still write a lot of long-hand letters and have a list of women readers who have become like family. We've never met, but somehow have clicked and I feel as if I know their families and they know mine. I can't imagine how anyone could survive without friends. We're all lucky indeed.

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  5. This may sound weird, but I'm more in touch with my school friends now that we're all on Facebook. Who knew?

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  6. Wonderful post, Tara! As others have noted above, thank you for the reminder!

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  7. Nice post, Tara. I have some of all of those kinds of friends and value each and every one. One kind of friendship not mention, I am aware of particularly since I just lost her - animal friends. They ask so little and give so much, and somehow it expands our worlds when we make contact across the species. Thanks to all of you for getting me through my quiet week. Ron's doing very, very well.

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    1. We will definitely add our animal friends to the list!

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  8. I love this post as much as I <3 you, Tara! I remember being so nervous when the series launched and how much your warm, caring spirit steadied me and encouraged me to think- hey- maybe I could do it because I wasn't alone. We went on to become good friends and critique partners and I feel like the luckiest person to have you in my professional and personal life. xo

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  9. I feel the same way. Friendships are a gift!

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  10. I count my three critique partners among my best friends. We've been together for over twenty years. Like Muriel, I would add animal friends, too.

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  11. Great post, Tara!! I love all my friends and love that they are all connected to me in various ways. Couldn't get through this life without my friends :)

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  12. I think friendship is wired into woman's DNA. :-) Like you, I have friends all over the place...except I don't think I have that one from childhood. Unless it's my sister--but we weren't really friends back then. lol

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  13. I love how everyone is so connected to friends. And I agree- it seems to wired into our DNA.

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