Field Notes From an Amateur…

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You may not know this about me… but I love love – in a charming (?) cart before the horse kind-of-way. Rest assured, however, that I will not be regaling you with full color playbacks of my daydreams. I have a heart, after all. Rather, I’m going to talk about friendship.

I have been living in Haifa, Israel for nearly 4 years as a volunteer at the Baha’i World Centre. For half of this time I’ve enjoyed the immense privilege of playing with a local water polo team. And beyond a shockingly limited Hebrew vocabulary, my Israeli teammates have taught me about the importance of family. They have really welcomed me into their lives and into their families.

So back to my fascination with love… it leads me to do all kinds of things. Like read entire blogs devoted to variations on the theme. Which is how I chanced upon the following: “It is not a lack of love, but a lack of friendship that makes unhappy marriages.” — Friedrich Nietzsche (via Kissssing – A Love Blog).

My Nana and I, circa my first birthday.

And this is really the secret to the success of all relationships… not just marriages. The more that I make efforts to transition to a “grown-up woman,” the more that I begin to understand the value in true friendship. With my parents, siblings, grandparents, coworkers, neighbors. The secret to to any good, strong and healthy relationship is the strength of the relationship. By which I mean your commitment to relating to the people along for the ride. Spend time together weekly, daily if you can. Laugh and smile. Play nicely. And don’t take each other for granted.

I’m still trying to implement these lessons in my life… one day at a time style.

Aimee Piper lives in Orange County, CA.