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On Friendship

August 10, 2011

A friend who can experience terrifying glimpses into your mind without blinking is a keeper.

A friend like that does anything but judge. A friend like that is also a sounding board. A way to release the pressure of thoughts that build up in one’s head. For when I talk to my best friend, I feel like a pressure valve has been released.

Part of it is how deeply she cares, and the extent to which she can put herself aside to help me. Even with a new baby who wreaks havoc on her sleep and sanity, even while undergoing the incomprehensibly overwhelming sensations and life-altering complications that come with being a wife and a mother, she asks me how my life is. How work is. How this blog is going, how my family is. And she doesn’t ask once. She asks and asks and asks continuously until some buried nugget that has been festering has finally been unearthed. She rolls up her sleeves, urges me and pleads with me to join her until I give in, and we get to work.

I sometimes think of how ironic it is that my loneliness comes from being a person of faith. When it comes to being a friend, Muslims have to, first and foremost, be generous. And selfless. We have to forgive, overlook, and lend support. We have to honour our friends as guests and pray for them in their absence. We have to give and give and give. And not expect gratitude. Not expect anything, really, in return, because we seek our return not from them, but from God.

I’ve upheld this model for many years now, and while I’m grateful for how much it simplifies things, let me tell you one thing: at times, all that giving can take a real toll on you.

My deepest friendship is the one that is not so centered on giving. Somehow, all of my generosity is returned to me by manifold by this one woman. The giving and taking are divinely proportioned, reminding me of how Allah draws much closer to us as we try and get closer to Him.

I cannot define what it is that makes her so, and the inability to define her is part of why I love her so much. But I do know that she is a divinely bestowed gift. She’s a mechanism Allah built into my life so that I can come close to understanding what it is that goes on inside my head, so that I can understand what divine love is. She is there so that I can keep being me.

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9 Comments leave one →
  1. August 10, 2011 12:53 am

    Beautiful and touching post Sis.

  2. Sara permalink
    August 10, 2011 3:40 pm

    Sarah!! This post literally brought tears to my eyes! Ure the best!!!! *big hug*
    Friendship is an investment done by both partiesMeir you hadn’t given so much of yourself to our relationship then we would never have lasted so long! Love u Hun! Missing u loads!
    And as always, well-constructed and well-expressed. 🙂

    • August 10, 2011 4:01 pm

      🙂 I really wanted to express what you meant to me–you deserve to know. Love you too Sara.

  3. August 12, 2011 7:28 pm

    Muslimah, first off, thank you for subscribing to my blog, I really appreciate the gesture. I’ve read your last two posts and found myself enjoying your writing style and passion. I look forward to your future posts and perhaps conversing with you through social media.

    Your brother,
    Noor A Jahangir
    Author, The Changeling King

    • August 12, 2011 8:23 pm

      Salaam Noor. Welcome and thank you for dropping by! It was such a pleasure to discover your blog and your love for the fantasy genre as well. I look forward to reading it and keeping in touch.

  4. August 13, 2011 5:17 pm

    assalamualykum sister.
    beautiful entry. I wish that one day Allah will bring me a great companion like that you have. As a new Muslim, I have been starting fresh and brand new as my non-Muslim friends can’t relate to me and we both are leading now very different lifestyles. Thankfully Allah has blessed me with my husband, but I hope like you, I will be able to share this beauty of what we call true sisterhood.

    JazakAllah Kheyr.Ramadhan Kareem.
    Your dear sister in Islam,
    Khadijah

    http://www.onechinesemuslimah.blogspot.com

Trackbacks

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