Blood relations are a given. You may not like your uncle or your siblings or your mom or dad. At least some of the time. But they are kin. You put up with their ideocyncratic ways. You didn’t ask for them, you just inherited them. They are blood.
In-laws are pretty much the same way. They come with the territory when you marry.
Work relationships? In a way, co-workers are like fish in a fishbowl. You all gotta swim the same direction or the pond gets roiled and muddy in a hurry.
It isn’t exactly a no-brainer, but you learn the unwritten rules of the organization, and you abide by them most of the time. Or you get fired. Or move on.
But friendships. That’s a whole different kettle of fish. You are there by choice. You can walk out the door any time you choose. And they can, too. You can fight and make up, or you can fight and split forever. The key is choice. You both choose to be in relationship together.
The bonds are tenuous at first, but grow stronger by the year. I’ve got some friends I’ve had for years and some for decades. And they mean a lot to me.
But it takes effort. Friendships–good ones–are not casual relationships. They take a lot of work and attention and flexibility. The glue of strong affection keeps them stuck together.
Like bubblegum and bailing wire, they shouldn’t hold together, but somehow they do.
Friendship! That person willing to walk the extra mile for you.
And when your lover is your best friend? Absolute nirvana!