I’ve been thinking a bit about friends lately – what it means to have them, what it means to keep them and how important they are, especially for young girls.
Chloe has formed a tight-knit group of friends. They’re supportive of each other in a way that’s refreshingly genuine and positive. Two of the girls in their “quartet” came over today and spent the afternoon (the other friend is away on vacation this week). Based on what I’ve witnessed of their interactions and what Chloe has told me, they don’t judge each other for their differences, they’re honest with each other, they laugh at each other’s idiosyncrasies and they accept each other for who they are, warts and all.
I love seeing how Chloe has embraced the company of these three girls. As she enters her teen years, I suspect their support will be important to her in ways that she can’t even contemplate right now. She claims to be confident that she won’t do stupid shit, but all kids do stupid shit when they’re teenagers. And technology has made it incredibly easy for their generation to do stupid shit. At least the girls will be able to keep each other in line and reduce the odds of regrettable crap actually happening.
Sophie is currently in her room having a sleepover with one of her very best friends. They’ve been buddies since pre-K. Although they attend the same elementary school, they’ve yet to have a post-pre-K class together. But that hasn’t mattered much. They are always excited to see each other. Sophie’s friend cares deeply about Sophie and is very attuned to Sophie’s feelings. She makes Sophie laugh. And Sophie wants nothing more than to ensure her friend is comfortable and happy when they get together.
When I was Sophie’s age, I didn’t have friends like that – true besties whom I’d known since I was four. When you’re that young I think it’s hard to maintain friendships for so long – one year in the life of a little kid might as well be decades. But the two girls complement each other. Sophie has an artist’s sensibility and is sometimes a bit shy and reserved. Her friend has a knack for science and is extremely open and energetic. Sophie’s the cuddly koala bear to her friend’s jumping kangaroo.
It makes me happy to know that my girls have such good friends to help them navigate this crazy world and that they’re not alone in their quest to understand it.