"I've always dreamed of having a 'bosom' friend...a true kindred spirit." Anne of Green Gables, L.M. Montgomery
I am lucky enough to have found my "kindred spirit", as Anne would say. We met in college, and although we got on swimmingly enough there, we have only grown closer as the years have passed. Friendship is something that can't be planned, conspired, or forced. But when it grows on its own, it is a miraculous and beautiful force.
Unfortunately, my best friend and I live about thirty hours apart, if you were to drive the span. Even if you fly; it takes about three hours, usually two separate flights, and most often over $250. At best, we see each other twice a year; more often it's once. This can pose some challenges! But when you are truly committed to a friendship, it is possible to keep the relationship alive; despite seemingly insurmountable obstacles.
Here are a few ways my kindred spirit and I make the distance seem smaller:
1. Weekly Phone Chats
This has to be very intentional, at least for us. We talked about the possibility of calling each other once a week and settled on a day that is easiest for us to squeeze in a chat. Our weekly talk usually takes place on Saturday. First thing in the morning or right before bed at night seem to be the most common phone tryst times. We have been having these weekly chats for so long now, they are a part of our regular weekly schedules.
2. Keep a Memory Book
In junior high, a friend and i passed a notebook back and forth almost daily with short notes we had written to each other the evening before. These notes usually consisted of complaining about teachers and classes, gossiping about friends, and analyzing guys. Immature, I know.
But the same concept works with my best friend and I across time and miles. We share a book of our favorite memories together and take turns keeping the book and filling it in between visits. We've also each added favorite quotes, photos of shared memories over the years, and even cards we've written to each other.
Phone calls, e-mails, social networking, and memory books only suffice for so long. Nothing can replace face-to-face contact. Make sure you squeeze in quality time with your dearest friends regularly, even if regularly means once a year. This may be difficult, but certainly not impossible. My mom and her longtime best friend have been meeting together at least once a year since their initial separation after high school. It's been over thirty-five years and they're still going strong.
If you haven't found your kindred spirit, you have my sympathy. But don't give up hope- you never know where one will pop up! Keep cultivating the friendships that you have, and forming new ones- and you're bound to find that one who seems knitted to your very soul.
Marilla Cuthbert: [to Anne] "I think you may be a kindred spirit after all."