In the Company of Good Friends

Mitch Schneider
October 14, 2019

I am blessed. Even when I thought I was alone I have always found myself in the company of good friends.

What does that mean exactly? What is being a good friend all about?

Being a good friend is someone who sits at the foot of your bed in silence when silence is what you need. It’s someone walking with you as you tread back and forth across the 6th Floor at Helford Hospital. It’s the quiet encouragement to swallow when swallowing feels like there are razor blades sliding down your throat.

It’s about acknowledgment and acceptance, empathy and compassion.

There are two sides to this ‘Company of Good Friends’ business: the giving side and the receiving side. There is being a good friend and there is the gracious acceptance of friendship. I’d like to think I know a little bit about both.

I try to be a good friend. Although I have found myself crippled by the belief I could and should do more: that I could have and should have done more. But, more than anything else, I have benefited from the genuine goodness of the great friends I’ve had throughout my life.

They saved my sanity when I was a boy and more recently, turned my illness and subsequent transplant into one of the most positive experiences of my life. An experience that has taught me that the best way to find yourself in the company of good friends is to be a good friend yourself.

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