“That’s me. You like me anyway.” – Radar from Paper Towns

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This week, I want to focus on people. I have learned over the years that friendship is NOT easy. It takes time, love, and a true commitment to make friendship work.

I read the book Paper Towns by John Green not too long ago and one quote, in particular, stood out to me. (See the quote below.)

“You know your problem, Quentin? You keep expecting people not to be themselves. I mean, I could hate you for being massively unpunctual and for never being interested in anything other than Margo Roth Spiegelman, and for, like, never asking me about how it’s going with my girlfriend – but I don’t give a shit, man, because you’re you. My parents have a shit ton of black Santas, but that’s okay. They’re them. I’m too obsessed with a reference website to answer my phone sometimes when my friends call, or my girlfriend. That’s okay, too. That’s me. You like me anyway. And I like you. You’re funny, and you’re smart, and you may show up late, but you always show up eventually.”
― Radar in the book by John Green, Paper Towns

When I read this quote, I immediately thought about my lost friendships. In case you don’t know, I consider a lost friendship as a friendship from the past that had potential to be great, but one or both parties were not willing to put forth 100 percent effort to make it last. I have had MANY lost friendships over the years. Most of the time it was mutual, but a lot of the time, it was me not willing to put up with the way I was being treated.

Radar (but really, John Green), from Paper Towns, makes an incredible point about friendship, or any relationship for that matter. We all expect people not to be themselves. We expect people to act the way in which we believe they should. Now, I am not saying people who are truly bad people should be forgiven because, “That’s who they are.” No. What I mean is that there are aspects to people that we obviously loved from the beginning. We have to be willing to look past the negative aspects that may arise in order for a friendship to truly blossom.

Friends
Emily and Tori, two of my best friends!

As radar states, “I could hate you for being massively unpunctual and for never being interested in anything other than Margo Roth Spiegelman… but I don’t give a shit, man, because you’re you.” This portion of the book made me consider all the “not so favorable” traits I possess that my friends love me for despite them. I am loud. I am competitive. I feel the need to correct people. I am impatient. I zone out a lot. I am a backseat driver. The list goes on… But, even though I possess those traits, I have a lot of great traits that my friends love too! I am funny. I am loyal. I am giving. I work hard. I am intelligent. I always look for the good in people. I am trustworthy. I love them all dearly.

All of those traits are me. They like me anyway. Like Radar from Paper Towns, his friends love him and do not expect him to be anyone other than himself. That is something we all can learn from this book. Our friendships can survive almost anything if we do not expect people to be a certain way.

David cannot do more than two things at once. It drives me crazy when I have to ask him things twice, but I love him anyway. That’s just him. Tori can be hard to sway at times… but I love her anyway. That’s her.  Every person has his or her own set of traits. We either can live with them or we cannot. If not, consider the traits you possess that your friends deal with too. No person is perfect.

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