It’s finally fall and in honor of Libra season, I want to take a moment of reflection to focus on love.
I love love. I know this isn’t rare, even among young, emotionally guarded college students. But I’m not just talking about the kind of love that they write songs about. Romantic love gets all the hype. Books, movies, even the best songs all center around finally finding someone who makes your heart race, someone to marry and live the rest of your life with, someone you’re truly destined to be with. Don’t get me wrong, I consume this media just as much as anyone.
I just want to take a moment to talk about the other kinds of love I think deserve just as much, if not more, value.
I feel most loved surrounded by friends. The ones who always ask how my day was, or how I’ve been feeling, or the ones that immediately dive into the story they’ve been wanting to tell me for days. It’s the type of love where I feel most relaxed. I don’t have to worry about seeming likable or saying something weird. I don’t have to worry about who else they love or if they still care about me.
This isn’t to say platonic love should be unconditional or that your friends don’t love you if they don’t do all these things. That’s the great thing about love, even between friends; it can take so many forms. Some friends might express how much they care by making sure you’re eating regularly, some friends might show it by stopping whatever they’re doing to talk with you, some friends might show it by sending you memes that made them think of you. People care and love differently. I know in my own life I’ve met so many people that express their love and excitement with hugs; hugs haven’t ever felt particularly comforting for me, though. I love that kind of love I feel when one of my friends mentions something even I forgot I had said or the warmth in my heart when I realize in the moment how much I appreciate my friends all laughing or even arguing in Peirce. These moments are what gets me through the week at times.
Sometimes the most caring friends are the ones who will call you out when you’re not being genuine, or when you’re too good for that person you’ve been talking to, or when your shoes are too ugly to leave the house.
Sometimes it’s hard to be a person and not be overwhelmed by anxiety or negativity when so much is going on around you. But it’s good to know when there are people you can fall back on for support or at least some temporary comfort. And it’s just as important to support those same people when they might need you. We can’t expect too much from the same people all the time, but it’s comforting to know there are some people to find comfort in at times.
Friendship is so important. Platonic love is not valued enough in this world. It has no great expectations of what you can be. Friendship can be so much more comforting and much more reliable at times. The world is hard and it’s important we care for one another when we can.