I have a little fiddle-leaf fig plant that resides in my room. His name is Fig.
ANYHOW. This is the kind of fig tree that we have, and this is Fig:
As of late, it’s been about feeding Fig (yeah yeah yeah, I’m a 62 year old woman, I know). It’s about making sure he gets enough sunlight and looking at the weather to see if he can go outside (they like temperate weather, but they also have moving trauma). If you’re a plant owner, you know it’s not easy. And if you’re like me, you’ve named and personalized your plant. This post isn’t about how to be a plant owner or taking care of a Fig- it’s about being a friend. A true friend.
Some of mine have left and gone overseas, some are not, but are still sufficiently distant. I consider myself lucky to have a few close to me. And I know who they are. I speak to them. And when I don’t, I still know what’s going on in their life. I know they’re invested in me and I am invested in them. There’s a mutual, intangible feeling that you’re on the same page. But recently, I’ve taken a look at who I surround myself with, and it doesn’t look too pretty. A part of me feels as though I’ve found community, and a part of me feels like I’m still grasping at straws. My friendship garden looks a little weedy, a little toxic and in need of care. Like Fig needs care. I believe that we should weed our weeds, people who are not beneficial toward our lives. People who do not add to our lives, just as someone would tell you to quit something that doesn’t add to your life (i.e. smoking, a fallen career, a significant other, eating too many chips, etc.). Just like a fig, or any plant, we have to weed in order to grow.
You’re allowed to do that. I think that’s something that people overlook, or something they let hang over them while the foster fake relationships. But friendships flow in and out. There are people who are no longer in my life, but I will always remember that 1 story or 1 lesson or 1 memory they’ve taught me.
I’ve never taken friendships lightly. I want to be able to really know my friends, support them and face hardship and dumb with them. That takes a lot of time, and we don’t have time for everyone. That’s why I take People Notes (but this is a topic for another time). The fact that we don’t have time for everyone saddens the crowd-pleaser, ideal person in me. But again, life is far too short to try and invest in everyone. Especially to enjoy and relish a relationship like a friendship. It’s sacred. Like gold-paint-feather-headdress-dance-around-a-bonfire-at-the-beach sacred.
If you have a good one: someone you feel comfortable with telling your poop stories to, someone you can rely on, someone who is on the same wavelength as you (despite differences), someone you have a good feeling about- and that’s not everyone- hang on to them. Feed them with your light and comfort and craughs (that’s crying + laughing, together).