There I sat in a skyblue pencil skirt paired with a yellow top I once wore to dress up like that Arthur meme. Starry eyed. Enamored by the opportunity I have each time I visit my uncle and am able to witness what friendship looks like. In real time. A friend might be one of the rarest things to come across in earth. It requires an intentional effort. A real decision to be there for one another unbound by space and time. I sat there listening for hours to my uncle, one of the greatest storytellers I’ve ever known. And for hours my father laughed and corroborated these stories. We discussed many things and I continued to bounce my eyes from my uncle to my father and back again. Effortless. This relationship is deeply rooted. The synchronization of their spirits is one like I’ve never seen before. I can never help but to be in awe.
The main topic of discussion was nutrients. Nutrients are needed in order to sustain growth and a good quality of life. They are natural and can be found in foods. Many foods of which seem hard to find at your local supermarket these days; nonetheless, necessary. My uncle showed us the early springing fruit in his garden that he has tendered and gardened with love over many seasons. He talked us through each fruit and it’s story. Alternating between Twi and English but we still all laughed in the same language. This conversation was vastly informative; I learned so much about how to improve my own health and make better healthy choices in order to live a happier and healthier lifestyle. The stories that were woven in to give context and background to nutrient rich fruits like the goji berry, allowed my imagination to soar. I was blown away by the amount of information that was transported to me with such ease and humor. This moment I began to hold onto like it was my birthday, hoping it’d never end.
We came back inside to talk more. And as I was sitting at my uncle’s table drinking coffee spiked with vanilla and caramel creamer, I began to wonder about life’s nutrients. The metaphorical value of nutrients. What aspects of this life are required to sustain growth and a good quality of life? What do we need? Who do we need? In my 24 years of life I’ve learned that I don’t need a lot to be happy. In fact I’m the unhealthiest when I use things in the exterior to fill my insides. To increase or enhance my mood. But as the naturalista that I truly am, I love and respect nature. I believe in nature. When I am out in nature for a walk or just to breathe in air, to greet the sunrise or admire the moon, I’ve found my spirits are higher. So now I’m determined to intake more of life’s nutrients in order to be happier. I’m elevating to a new level that does not require engaging in toxic relationships, or relying on drugs or alcohol as a requirement for happy. Happiness comes from within. And it comes from what you put in. I’m most happy when I’m doing things that I love, unworried about things that may be out of my control. Completely submerged in the present but still keeping my dreams surrounding a better future. I’ve learned that I tend to isolate but that in life we do need each other. We need people to laugh, cry, dance, play, sing, study, share and Be with. We do. No man is an island. There is a reason and a value for every person who enters and even exits your life. What makes the difference between the people who pass through and those who stay is the love. Love is a decision. A constant. And in any friendship you have to consistently make the decision to choose one another. Much like my father and my uncle. They have chosen to keep in contact. They know each other so well that they know what works for them. I want that. I have been wanting and working and building and failing and trying to rebuild again and again to eventually have friendships like that.
Which leads me to one of the most important relationships with the richest source of nutrients that I know: God. Aligning myself with God in a way that I spend time in an organic and genuine way with Him is crucial to my health. I feel better internally and externally. It is difficult to do almost anything without hope and having a relationship with God gives me that. My father and Uncle each have a strong faith and relationship with God. Independently and yet also together. They pray for one another and also with. They have devoted themselves to living the work of the Gospel and that is why it’s not surprising that they have been able to align themselves with one another in a way that is heartfelt and real. They are like-minded and like hearted individuals. Since I was a small child, I was exposed to a friendship between my uncle and father where they would do anything for each other. It engrained in me a true respect for a friend. And now I know friendship in all of its rarity is a requirement for happy in this life. This is why I am constantly striving to be a better friend and am able to recognize how blessed I am to be able to call even one person-Friend. We all need more of life’s nutrients and we may need more of some than others but constantly evaluate your level of happy. And be sure to recharge on all of the good things so that mind, body and spirit you are able to stay healthy and keep happy.