There are numerous adages I can come up with to describe the importance of the family we choose for ourselves. Instead, I will share with you a poem that is very meaningful to me and wish my very good friend a very Happy Birthday. As always, HFS I wish you happiness on your birthday and ALL days.
"Portrait of a Friend"
I can't give solutions to all of life's problems, doubts,
or fears. But I can listen to you, and together we will
search for answers.
I can't change your past with all it's heartache and pain,
nor the future with its untold stories.
But I can be there now when you need me to care.
I can't keep your feet from stumbling.
I can only offer my hand that you may grasp it and not fall.
Your joys, triumphs, successes, and happiness are not mine;
Yet I can share in your laughter.
Your decisions in life are not mine to make, nor to judge;
I can only support you, encourage you,
and help you when you ask.
I can't prevent you from falling away from friendship,
from your values, from me.
I can only pray for you, talk to you and wait for you.
I can't give you boundaries which I have determined for you,
But I can give you the room to change, room to grow,
room to be yourself.
I can't keep your heart from breaking and hurting,
But I can cry with you and help you pick up the pieces
and put them back in place.
I can't tell you who you are.
I can only love you and be your friend.
Because senility has obviously set in on me prematurely, I have gotten confused. I know HFS' birthday is August 13th. However, I am addled and have no other excuse. Instead we will all call it the celebration of HFS' birthday weekend. In the meantime, I will scour our drug samples at work to see if I can find something to retard this decrepitude that has taken over my senses.