Walking With a Friend in the Dark

“Walking with a friend in the dark is better than walking alone in the light.” Helen Keller

A few incidents surprised me recently.

  • I was at an indoor concert, and a neighbor of more than 30 years saw me walk past. Later, she decided to look for me and told another neighbor, “Sue won’t be on the dance floor.” She was shocked to find me dancing. When she told me this, I said, “Why wouldn’t I be on the dance floor?”
  • My sister Mary said that a mutual friend told her I’m hilarious. Mary’s response was, “Sue?!”
  • I went to a concert with one of my best friends, Julie, who I’ve known since 7th grade. Later she said, “I didn’t realize you were a fan of rock ’n roll.”

rock concert

Within a two-week period, three people I’ve known most of my life said that I’m different than they’d thought. I’m not exactly who they thought I am, but they accept me.

These incidents made me wonder what might be true of my friends and family that I don’t realize. Maybe I’ve made assumptions about them, too, based on my history.

There is a lot of polarization in the United States regarding the upcoming presidential elections. Many of us wonder how our friends can support their candidate. People have said they can no longer be friends with another because of their political differences. However, it is not worth losing a friendship over politics. If our friends were identical to us, we’d never learn and grow. We need to respect that the other person has had a different history than we have and has reasons for their views.

I went to another concert with Julie and our husbands. As we were leaving, I hesitated because I have trouble seeing in the dark and I couldn’t get the flashlight on my I-phone to work. Julie linked her arm through mine and said, “It’ll be OK. There’s enough light, and I’ll help you.”

I laughed, because I felt like an old lady with Julie helping me walk. It felt like a foreshadowing of us helping each other as we age, just as we have supported each other for the past 47 years. This is what’s important—helping each other get through our difficult times and being there for each other.

There is not much more valuable than a close friend. Let’s accept our friends as they are and respect our differences as we want them to accept and respect us. Let’s help each other walk in the dark.

How are your friends different from you? How have you supported your friends lately?

About Susan Ekins

Freelance writer and blogger at Women Making Strides. Interested in personal leadership and empowerment. Wanting inspiration and to inspire. Leader in church ministries. Blog: http://www.WomenMakingStrides.com/ Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/WomenMakingStrides1
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9 Responses to Walking With a Friend in the Dark

  1. Sherri Russell says:

    This is beautiful Sue. What a great way to start my morning!


  2. A most thoughtful post, Sue. Makes me wonder if my friends’ image of me differs from my own image of myself.


  3. This is such a meaningful post to me today, Susan, and I appreciated reading it.
    I, too, am sometimes surprised by others’ images of me, friends from childhood saying how funny I was, when I always felt shy.
    My friends come from all walks of life, different backgrounds, religions, ages, income . . . I love them all.


  4. This is a nice article. You’re right, we should accept our friends’ differences from ours.


  5. Sarah Smith says:

    Great post, Sue. You should know that I have always seen you as one of my friends who accepts me for who I am and I’ve always appreciated it! So you’re living what you’re writing about!


  6. Georgia Terry says:

    Thanks Sue for this great post; definitely words to live by regarding friendship and respect. I know I am certainly grateful for your friendship and understanding and acceptance these many long years. Thank you from the bottom of my heart!


  7. Rita K. says:

    I have a variety of friends. Many of them share my love of books, writing and education. Others are quite different in age, interests, political leanings. All of them add to the richness of my life and help me become the best version of myself. Friends are the jewels of life! Loved your post.


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