Tough times show our true friends
Bear with me kindly, I am still on Moreno Batamba and “Mapenzi ya Shida”. That song was one of my soundtracks of 2020, as the issues the late Moreno raised in his lamentation hit home. Hard. I still feel the reverberations three years later.
A man’s friends can mistake his transition for his destination. In the song, Moreno talks about leaving a woman who has shown him her true colours after he went through a rough patch. But I believe that, as men, the principle applies to us as well. There are friendships we should leave because they are detrimental to us.
I read somewhere that blood makes relatives, but loyalty makes family. There are friends we may have blood covenants with, but if the loyalty is gone, then it is only a matter of time before you receive a betrayal kiss right after you have broken bread together. Or a kiss – this one of betrothal - given by Judas to someone you shared your bed and bread with.
I have realised that a Judas’ kiss catches us unawares because we were fully invested in our friendship. If you are vulnerable with your friends, it means you have opened up all your inner recesses and are holding nothing back. You are like a cat that lies on its back when it trusts you, showing you its most vulnerable parts, knowing there is no way in the world you will hurt it.
They say the opposite of love is indifference. If your friends are indifferent to you when you are in transition, it means that, to start with, you were their friends but they were never yours.
But that’s not a waste, though. Do not feel used and beat yourself for, supposedly, wasting your time. If you were real, it is their loss. You never wasted your time and good vibes. Count it as seeds that you sowed. Trust me, in due time, you will reap what you sowed. You may not reap it in getting better friends, but in getting peace that surpasses human understanding.
If your friends are indifferent to you when you are in transition, it means it is time to let them go. They have outlived their usefulness. Your destiny does not need dead weight. Drop them like they are hot. Otherwise, they will unnecessarily weigh you down and drown your destiny.
Here’s what I have learnt. Everyone that started with you or you grew up with is not supposed to go with you to the next dimension. Sometimes, because you are too loyal to do the pruning, God sends you storms to make you see the true nature of friends. When they hit you with a haymaker of indifference until you see stars, you finally see them for who they really are.
Some friends are self-inflicted wounds. They are the type your mom constantly warned you against while you were growing up, but you thought she was a party-pooper. Until you found yourself staring at the barrel of an AK47, pointed by a cop on a shoot-to-kill mission, because you were hanging out with the wrong company in the wrong place. But your mother was in the right place at the right time; on her knees. That is why you survived.
There are times when, to exorcise you from self-inflicted friends, God causes your fortunes to tank in a Job-esque way, until you become unrecognisable because of what has befallen you. Because you cannot read minds when you are cruising on Easy Street, your hard knocks open wide your friends’ hearts.
Still doubt me? You think y’all you and your friends are tighter than Siamese twins? Bro, “ukifungiwa nyumba itajulikana”.