They have to be annoying at some level. You must have something about them that you don’t like — something that pisses you off. Just enough to make you wonder why you’re friends. Just enough to remind you why you tolerate them.
They must have seen you naked. Maybe not literally, but, at your worst. In illness; depression; heartbreak.
In anger, especially.
Because it’s when your guard is lowered that you’re you — authentic, flaws and all.
It’s when you’ve been pissed off that reason flies out the window and fair play becomes a thing of myth.
They must be able to push your buttons. You should be able to not be nasty when it happens. If you do, you don’t deserve them.
If they do, they don’t deserve you.
You must have slept on the same bed. Maybe not literally (but it helps).
Nothing says ‘I’m comfortable around you’ like an intentional, well-placed fart in the middle of a conversation.
You should see stars when you laugh. Maybe not as often. But if your lungs don’t hurt during a round of ‘this is the funniest thing I’ve heard all my life’, then, maybe — maybe — you should reconsider.
Lastly, it should take time. Because all good things grow. All good things change. Even if the connection is instant, the matter requires learning.
Of self and of other.
Age doesn’t matter. Not really. Nor race. Nor taste. Nor place.
You can even come from the same family.
When you find yourself thinking about their pain when you eventually die, maybe you’ve found a bunch of keepers.
The least you can do is show up. Everyday. As authentically as possible.
Be there for them. No matter what. That’s the point.
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