Friendships have always been something very important in my life. Having parties or gatherings in an effort to keep relationships close and fun has also been something I have enjoyed. Whether it was my 2nd grade birthday party in our garage, fueled by the tunes of MC Hammer, or throwing a birthday party for someone else. Any way I can get people together for a great time and making memories, is an exciting challenge for myself.
That being said, I often find myself feeling frustrated when people don’t seem to get that or don’t seem to value friendship as much as myself. As a friend to you, I will always do my best to support you in your adventures, I show up, I don’t flake on you–unless something really urgent comes up. I am loyal. To me, loyalty means being there for people and showing up for them, not even just physically, but emotionally as well.
I understand we all operate differently from one another, but I can’t help but think that the value of friendship and personal connection has vastly changed, in just the past decade. I’m often grateful for the fact that Facebook, Snapchat, and the other large social media giants did not exist when I was young. It saddens me seeing people only communicating and interacting through social media. And maybe it’s the communication major in me that is more sensitive to all of this, but I can’t say I have much hope for the social lives of the youngsters who have not known life without cell phones and social media.
There is no doubt that it is much more simple and convenient to hit an app that will bring you a flood of information about anyone you consider a friend or important. A quick scroll gets you pretty caught up for the day. The thought of physically calling someone seems foreign. I remember back in elementary school when I would be on the phone with my best friend for hours it seems! However, I’m extremely guilty of preferring a text over a call now. I tend to blame my job and needing to be on the phone a lot of the day that prevents me from wanting to be on it after work.
I often wonder if the ease of technology is making us more introverted in some ways. Even the extroverts. Is it making us lazier as friends to one another? It is making life more generic? Are we placing less value on one on one, in person, face to face human connection? It saddens me to think that in ways that ‘yes’ is the answer to these questions.
I continue to have hope that there may be a shift “backwards” a bit. I don’t think the technology is going anywhere, but I do hold out hope that in some ways the way we view social media and keeping in touch with one another, will yet again become more personal. May we get together more in person, phones tucked away, and fully embracing the human connection, the laughter, and the presence of one another.
Thankfully, I am extremely blessed and fortunate to have so many life long friendships. With people who have known me as far back as kindergarten. I know this is rare for many people but having people in your life for that long, truly is priceless.