A recent study claims that the average person has fewer than five friends he or she can count on in a crisis. Of course, I read that and thought about how many friends I could count on in a crisis, and then I wondered how we define “crisis.” I mean, what really constitutes a crisis? I locked myself (and Jackson) out of our apartment earlier this week. Is that a crisis? Or what about when I was hospitalized over the summer when I suffered a kidney infection and went into preterm labor? That’s a crisis, right? Surely, a death in the family is a crisis. A breakup? Yes. Getting lipstick on your wedding dress ten minutes before you’re supposed to walk down the aisle? Sure.
Obviously, there are different levels of crises, just as there are different types of friends. In my mind, friendships are pretty fluid. The person you can count on to hold your hand through a breakup today may not be around in three years to help you process your mother’s cancer (or whatever crisis you’ll be going through then). At this moment, today, if I needed something, I feel certain I have more than five people who would be willing to help me (but then again, I suppose it depends on the “level” of help that I need and whatever is going on in their lives). Some of those people have been friends for years and years. Some people I’ve known a few months. What about you? Whom would you count on in a crisis? Whom would you help? What are you doing to help foster a community it your life? It’s so, so important. The older I get, the more I appreciate the importance of having solid people in your corner you can depend on. It’s worth the investment!