What about your friends?

“I took a vow that from now on, I’m gon’ be my own best friend” – Beyonce’ “Me, Myself and I”

1.  a person whom one knows and with whom one has a bond of mutual affection, typically exclusive of sexual or family relations.
2. The definition of friend is someone who is on your side. An example of a friend is an ally in a protest. Friend is defined as a person that you are fond of, with whom you talk or spend time. An example of a friend is the person you have known a long time and trust. – yourdictionary.com
What ya'll know about that Zack Attack!?!?

                                      What ya’ll know about that Zack Attack!?!?

Whodini asked a powerful question in 1984: “Friends, how many of us have them”? I can proudly raise my hand and reply, yes, I have friends, excellent ones at that, ones I can depend on 🙂 Friendship is something that I not only value, but cherish. The mutual bond and reciprocity provides me with the support and love I need, in the great and not so great times. We live in an era where the word has now transformed into a verb, (Friend me on Facebook), and we use it to describe a range of people in our lives, from our coworker to the person we go way back, when I use to have the red and black lumberjack, with the hat to match (Biggie Smalls is the illest).

But there’s one friend I’ve had somewhat of an on-again, off-again issues with. Our relationship has been a bit of a rollercoaster, filled with moments of tenderness coupled with torment. I would spend time with her, and sometimes feel uncomfortable in her presence. I’ve been mean to her for absolutely no reason, lied to her, ignored her needs at times. Sometimes I would stand up for her, other times, ignored her cries for help. We would hang out with others, and I would talk about her in a negative light, being overly critical, and never really giving her the props that she deserved.

A couple of close friends would call me on the carpet about all the sideways remarks, and tell me to check myself, but I would brush them and their opinions off. I felt like I knew this chick better than they did, and my opinion of her wasn’t up for debate, regardless of the evidence they would present to combat my stance.

I would stay mad at her for days over a decision she made, remind her of her shortcomings, point out those extra pounds she was carrying, being a downright jerk, and I eventually reached that fork in the road where I HAD to re-evaluate our relationship.

"Dat's my best friendddd"

                                       Roll that neck Bey! Let em know!

That friend’s name is Shelley…That friend is me.

One of the hard lessons I have learned over the past 7 years of my life is that I wasn’t a very good companion to myself. Though I’ve always thought of myself as a good friend, did I in turn show myself the same love and admiration that I share with my homies?

Do I really like myself? Am I kind to myself? Do I value myself? Where is my worth rooted? Do I cheer for myself? Believe in my talents? Can I see what others see in me? Do I make decisions that show how much I like/love myself? Do I treat myself well, and how? Do I accept myself, flaws and all? Have I taken the time to discover more about how I am?

I’ll admit, this experience (the c-word) stripped me down to a place emotionally that I had never been. EVER. It’s been a non-stop rebuilding process of my worth, but I have gradually reached the place where I am looking at this moment in my life for the opportunity to learn the art of self-care.

On my mission to be my own BFF, I pour into myself through reading countless books and blogs, having conversations, journaling, praying, listening to podcasts, going to retreats, cooking for myself, treating myself, taking social media breaks, you name it. I made it a priority to invest in myself, whether the gesture was grand or small. I have even taken up “mirror work” modeled by my fairy godmother Louise Hay, when you look at yourself in the mirror, look into your eyes, and speak positively over yourself. It may seem corny and weird, but it works wonders.

My relationship with myself has improved and I can see the tangible fruit of it. I can look in the mirror now and my initial thought won’t be critical or judgmental, but loving and kind. It’s hard work, and everyday I have to remind myself I was created in and from love, and that I am loved, not because of what I do, or the labels I or others place on me, but just because I am me. Months ago, I read a book called “Dying to be Me” by Anita Moorjani (life-changing) that dropped some serious knowledge into my soul. She wrote “I’m loved unconditionally, for no other reason than simply because I exist.”

Today, my sissie friend sent us a group text of this post below that was totally in line with with I’ve been feeling all week. I love how the truth always has a way of landing in my path. I’m so thankful for a community of friends that love me and show me how to love myself better. What’s your definition of friend?



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