Sacred Friendships & The Mortifying Ordeal of Being Known

2024 friendship garden party perspective Mar 14, 2024

A friend of mine has been going through a rough patch in her marriage. The things she is dealing with have some scary similarities to the relationship I left in the dust without looking back.

She is near and dear to my heart, a sister from another mister. We met just a couple of years ago and our separate guards slowly went down the more we talked, as they do for us soft spoken girlies. Suddenly, it was like I’ve known her my whole life, and I know the feeling is mutual. Friendships like these are sacred and we know it.



The thing is, I have never met her husband. I don’t even know what the man looks like. But I know he’s the love of her life, her best friend in the whole entire world; and where I may imagine his inner child who has yet to reconcile deep-seated fears, she also sees the present man trying to hold that child’s hand as they figure it out together. She sees the whole and she loves him with relentless devotion.

There are stark differences between me and my friend. I’ve had years of therapy throughout my life. She has had to figure everything out on her own. I have a loving family who may misunderstand me at times but will still go to the ends of the earth and beyond to support me when I need it. She never had that. 

Our similarities, though, seem to know no end. She recently lent me her high school journal and let me tell you… I know that angst. I read her words and feel like they’re mine. We feel our emotions so deeply they all seem palpable. The joy and the anger. The love and the fear. The crush on that cute boy in Social Studies and the confusion when romance quickly becomes more complicated than anything our childhood daydreams would suggest. 

She and I seem to see through people in our own way. There’s something about having lived in survival mode for many consecutive years that drives us to be on our toes until we see the core of who someone really is versus who they present themselves to be. This friend saw me deal with my first “mean girl”... at the tender age of 31. It really shook me up! But this friend supported me through it all until that “mean girl” set her sights and petty decisions elsewhere, and our friendship only deepened.

There have been a few times when I just want to shake this friend and scream Run, girl! Get away! Leave him! I’ll help you pack! Because she deserves the best. Trust that I don’t put her on a pedestal - that would be a plain disrespect to her incredibly human self. But there is a ruthless side of me that can easily cut ties forever for the sake of self-preservation. Just like there is a ruthless side of her that will fight tooth and nail for the good of her man and their relationship.

There is no right answer here. It’s messy and difficult, for me as her friend who can only do so much, and for them as partners as they figure things out. And as the third party, the outside perspective that doesn’t know the whole story, I can only extend love for my friend. Just like she did when I navigated the passive-aggressive dynamic of a “mean girl”. I call out the parallels of my past and she sees them. She confides in me with her unique struggles and I see them, too. The reason this friendship is so sacred is that we hold space to simply be where we are.



As I plan my vision board for the upcoming Virtuosa Society Garden Party, I have been gathering inspiration to invite more friendships like this one into my life. They have always been few and far between for me as I learn the lifelong lesson of allowing myself to be known. This friend has shown me time and again that not only does my perspective have value, I am priceless by simply being.

I hope she reads this and feels the smile in my heart with these words. Her presence is both a warm hug and cynical chuckle at the ever-present audacity of life. I have been honored to be her confidant, as she is mine. Our roots are now entangled in the garden of life and we grow stronger together in the welcoming sunshine of Spring.

If you’re still reading, I would love to see you at our upcoming virtual Garden Party, to get to know you and your unique perspectives on life. You can learn more and register here! You never know where a new friend might be in the world, and better yet, what amazing and exciting new seeds they can sow in your garden of life.


With Seeds of Loving Friendship,


Caia Claire

Virtuosa Society Digital Media Manager