Childhood friendships are like a box of chocolates; you never know what you’re going to get and you don’t always get to pick and choose what you want. Childhood is the one thing in life that is dictates, or predestined without our input.
My neighborhood friends were formative in me becoming me, whether through positive or negative experiences. Thankfully, I was blessed with more positive than negative experiences, but whatever your experience, take solace in knowing that you are who you are today in many ways because of those innocent friendships that you had.
As a kid I was goofy, extremely athletic, constantly in a bathing suit trying to race someone, and honest to the extreme. While I was occasionally teased, my childhood friends accepted me for who I was, for my competitive nature, and instead of laughing at me, laughed with me. This is the beauty of childhood friendship: no judgement.
It wasn’t until this week that I have put much profound thought into the impact my childhood friends had upon me, but in the wake of a funeral, I have been compelled to much introspection, which in turn has enabled me to see new beauty and value to my past.
The past always carries a lot of pain, as does some of my childhood: I will never forget the day someone asked me if I was a boy or a girl, or the day when someone asked me if I had different parents than my attractive brother, for surely we couldn’t have come from the same parents. What I have learned though is that pain doesn’t have to scar us, instead, it can tattoo meaning into our lives if we look at it with the right perspective.
Be thankful for the players of your childhood memories, for in knowing your roots, they are the friends that always have a place in your heart, whether or not you are able to keep in touch. Let us all live like childhood friends, letting go of judgement and just being our innocent selves.