I have a tribe. Albeit small, these few individuals were carefully chosen and retained as my closest friends. Once in the circle, they have full access to my devotion, love and care. These are people who, for reasons I’m not quite sure of, have stuck with me through the years.
Not everyone is the same within this circle. Each one has something to offer that is unique only to them. I have an intimate circle, then one that extends further out a bit – but not far. To say that I am private is like saying there’s a couple of fruit flies in the kitchen come mid summer. It would be a grave understatement.
Although I know I could, I do not consult each one regarding the same issues. In fact, I never consult the group as a whole. One person may excel in spiritual matters while the other is so inventive she could quite easily build a boat from spare parts found in her garage. I have one friend that has a wild heart similar to mine. Another who enjoys sitting with wine in hand, pondering the unponderables. And of course, there is my brother, with whom I share all things – only because I know I can. He is a safe, non-judgmental harbor for all my thoughts.
I would rather have five close friends than fifty who wouldn’t be able to answer a question on my behalf, should I not be available. I know, if asked a personal question about me, these people could answer. They would, as expected, each supply a different reply. But then again, I am the kind of person with whom no simple answer can be offered. And they know that. Oddly enough, they like me anyway.
These people make me laugh, and because they own a piece of my heart, they can cause me to cry. Their pain is my pain. It has taken decades to establish this small circle.
When something is weighing heavy upon my mind, I will divulge the details to a few of my friends. Although no one has ever swayed me, I listen carefully to what they have to say. I trust them. And they trust me. I am the keeper of many secrets; hopes, deeds and failures that will never be revealed. I am their confidant and they are mine.
When I write, I reveal myself to the world. As of this writing, my words have been read faithfully by those in thirty-eight different countries. My circle, it seems, is expanding. As private as I keep myself, I am at the same time, revealing myself to the world. Even though only a small fraction of my readers contact me, I consider all those that let their eyes float across my words, to be members of my tribe. We all need a tribe – a few, or more, souls with whom we share ourselves. Someone to toss us a line when we are lost and adrift. Someone who reminds us how to laugh at the absurdity of life. Someone who isn’t afraid to listen to our fears, and most of all someone who listens to our dreams and tells us without hesitation, “I believe you can.”