The Beauty of Friendship (Latrelle)
Do you know how amazing it is to be surrounded by such beautiful, smart, fun and resilient women? Words can’t even begin to describe it. I’ve been so blessed to have such great friends that sometimes I forget many women have never and will never experience the beauty of friendship. Some don’t even desire to have a sisterhood. Casting friendships aside because of petty differences and unnecessary drama. Chalking it up to “I just can’t be friends with girls”. While it is a challenge to build lasting friendships, especially as adults, it is also possible and extremely necessary.
Female friendships help boost your mental wellness and help greatly reduce stress. It’s like having your own personal therapist and it cost you nothing but being a great friend in return.
My friends, many who have become very much like sisters, are ones I know I can call on in times of need. Be it the need for help, a laugh or simply to vent, they are always there. People are often surprised at the number of close friends I have. I, on the other hand take pride in it because each friend adds something special and unique to my life. As time goes on, and we experience sadness and joy, we grow closer together and our friendship continues to blossom. In a world where having a close group of female friends is deemed impossible, it is refreshing that women who are so different in so many ways can still be so much alike and mesh well. It’s a pleasure knowing that we have a relationship that is admired by many.
Let me be the first to say that our friendship is not perfect by any means. No relationship is. We bicker often, we get on one another’s nerves and sometimes we simply don’t want to be bothered with each other. However, this friendship is one that is authentic and often fills my spirit with joy and fullness. With our occasional frustrations with each other also comes peace, love and a sense of belonging. I can be my true self, unfiltered, raw and in my purest form. Being uniquely and unapologetically you while surrounded by other women who are their authentic selves is freeing and I do not take it for granted.
Having a solid sisterhood saved me from falling into depression, it saved me from loneliness, it even saves me from myself.
This sisterhood is the reason I have the strength and the desire to push through when things get hard. Having friends who remind you constantly how amazing and poppin’ you are, who encourage you to continually be your best and support you in every way they can and in everything you do is essential. Sometimes it takes having these friends, who aren’t afraid to tell you the truth in love, to remind you how blessed you are. They often become the voice of reasoning when you’re not thinking and especially when you’re thinking too much. They become your eyes when you’re blinded by love and passion. A sisterhood will literally “get you together” before you even realize you needed it.
Sisterhood saved me from having to suffer through the loss of a close friend alone. My tribe was right there experiencing it with me, and it made getting through those very dark days just a little easier. There is also the knowledge that they weren’t just there because they were directly affected, they were there because they cared and because they wanted to be. They were there because that’s what it means to be friends.
This experience affects us, to this day, in vastly different ways but we never stop being there for each other. When one or two of us are down, the others are the strength we need that day and vice versa. In this sisterhood we’ve not only lost friends but family members as well and every time we are there praying, being a source of comfort and providing the laughs we need to help us heal.
Our girl Carrie said it best, “no matter who broke your heart, or how long it takes to heal, you’ll never get through it without your friends.” I can say without a shadow of doubt, coupled with God, they are how I got through.
Maintaining healthy friendships are not easy. They require the same type of investment, respect, honesty, and loyalty as any other relationship. You’ll go through many changes in life but the one thing you can guarantee to last forever, regardless of distance or age, is a genuine friendship turned sisterhood. I encourage you to find your tribe and hold them close. Love on each other, pray together, and laugh until you cry.
Sisterhood saved me and it can save you too. That is the beauty of friendship.
This post is written by Latrelle Coward, as part of DEAR QUEENS’ Sisterhood Saved Me series, dedicated to honoring, celebrating, and inspiring black female friendship.
Latrelle is a lifestyle and self care blogger and podcaster. She aims to inspire millennial women to live inspired everyday and to remember to put themselves at the top of their daily to-do list. Latrelle is also an advocate for mental health and establishing healthy female friendships. She is a New Haven resident, mom of one, and is pursuing an education in communications and media studies. Check her work at www.iBrownsugar.com.