IRL. in real life. one of those new terms that confuse my parents on whatsapp, but to a room of certain individuals, it means everything. friendships, relationships, careers these days are built online, but what happens when these transfer to real life? well. in the case of emma gannon and laura williams, a friendship was born, which led to this - #IRLpanel, a panel hosted by women off the internet.
i wrote about the first ever panel a few months ago (which you can read here) with such gusto and passion, i knew i just HAD to attend the next one. i hadn't felt so excited to write in a long time, and if that stemmed from being in a room with like minded people, i knew that a ticket had to be mine. i was lucky and bagged two tickets to the latest panel which discussed friendship.
friendship is a touchy subject, especially amongst women. whilst i see myself as lucky to have a strong group of female friends who definitely support me, i have had past friendships which have disintegrated without me even knowing, or even fizzled away leaving bad tastes in both of our mouths and now when we see each other we smirk and turn away. it's not as clear cut as a relationship. what are the rules? well, emma, laura, jade, nadin and lucy (PLEASE CLICK THEIR LINKS AND CHECK THEM OUT. THEY'RE AMAZING. cheers) set out to discuss.
i've listed the most tweetable quotes of the night, so please feel free to comment and say what friendship is to you. i'd be ever so interested.
friendship is someone to help you navigate the torture of human life.
this made me laugh, and 100% agree. i am british, i am sarcastic, and i am cynical. i am well aware life is not always rainbows and smiles, as the girl in mean girls so eloquently cried. a large amount of my friendships are spent moaning about things. but that's ok with me. we can cry together, we can moan together, but we can also celebrate and be happy together. the up often outweighs the bad.
the love of my life is my best friend.
this is honestly one of the nicest things i've ever heard, and belongs on greetings cards everywhere. this gem came from nadin, who stated that her number one person in her life is her best friend. it doesn't matter if you don't see them everyday, or even speak everyday, as long as you have that person you would call if you were crying, laughing or any other emotion....you're doing ok.
people come into your life for a reason, a season or a lifetime.
this is a quote that really resonated with me. it comes from the stem of conversation that people are in your life for defining moments, and sometimes those moments last a lifetime, and other times they may be a year. we all have those friends who, at university or school, you couldn't imagine life without...fast forward, you're 23 and you just gave them a polite smile when you passed them in asda. it happens. but you also get the people who just won't leave...and those ones are pretty special.
social media is testing us to be better friends.
social media is a big deal in friendships. we can all relate to being a little bit peeved if our best friend doesn't remember to write happy birthday on our wall, or seen that a group of friends all went for spontaneous drinks and seemed to forget to extend that invite to you. and we are all guilty on clicking 'maybe' on that event, knowing full well we have no intention of going whatsoever. it's allowed us to get lazy, and instead of talking to each other about problems we simply screenshot pictures and convos that annoy us, and never raise it irl.
let's stop letting social media do our talking for us, and value our friendships in real life. it's all very well having 60000 friends on Facebook, but when you have no one to call when you get that promotion, it's time to step outside the complacency of social media.
you can be complicit in the drifting of a friendship.
this is the one that stuck with me. the awkwardness of a friendship drifting apart can be well known to both parties, but there is a silent contract between you that you won't bring it up, and just let it be. there is no malice, no 'it's not you, it's me' talk. just two friends walking further away from each other, until eventually you can't even remember what it was you had in common in the first place. there doesn't have to be a drama, but in reality it can feel like the worst thing in the world. no one wants to lose friends, but sometimes you can have fulfilled your role in each others lives, and move on. it's ok. it's life. but a hard lesson to learn.
thank you IRL for continuing to nurture my brain and push me to continue writing. i haven't felt so inspired since i was much younger, and i hope to one day even be on that panel with you. the can do attitude of the ladies makes me think that HELL YEAH i can write that book i've always wanted to write, and ofc one day i can be one that panel. because if they can do it, why can't i?
until next time xo