Michael and Ariel - Friends across the seas
Michael - true friend across at least 7 seas!
Michael is a long distance friend. We met when he was visiting Australia at a 1-day Livingness workshop that Universal Medicine was hosting. After just this one day, we kept in contact and we have become AMAZING friends ever since.
Michael’s home resides in London, UK and I live in Brisbane, Australia – therefore, we don’t get to see each other in physical form. When considering our friendship is so STRONG and so close it’s almost hard to believe that we’ve spend such a tiny amount of time together in person. I call on him anytime to Face Time, chat and connect. Michael and I support each other to really embrace our lives, to have fun and enjoy ourselves.
We both love playing piano so whenever possible, we will send each other short videos of us playing different tunes. For my birthday Michael actually wrote me a song and sang it while playing piano! I received this while walking on the beach so I sent him back a video of me singing him a song of our amazing friendship, ‘The Greatest Gift In The World’ by Michael Benhayon, GM Records.
To me, Michael is not just your average friend. When he makes a friend he brings all of him. He shows himself in full, imperfections and perfections. He opens himself up for deep and honouring relationships and does not let ideals get in his way of how society thinks a boy should treat a girl, or how he should treat anyone.
Observing Michael over the very short time frames that I have seen him in person, I’ve always admired the way he treats others he may be speaking to.
His warm, personable nature shines and can be spotted from afar. His joyous, big smile can’t but put a smile on my face every time!
Michael also makes no assumption that there is a romance to follow this sweet and pure friendship; considering we are opposite genders, we know and trust it’s genuinely a true friendship. Michael feels like a dear brother to me that I have known my whole life and will continue to know and grow with.
Ariel is a dear, dear friend of mine
We met during a Universal Medicine workshop – ‘Livingness 1’ in the Eastern Australian suburb of Goonellabah, where we took part in an exercise that asked us to explore the fact that before any bias or judgement we all have a sensitivity towards people and naturally are drawn to connect.
The very exercise was an amazing way to connect with Ariel for the first time and gave us a very solid foundation for our friendship.
Whilst I was in Australia we were living far apart geographically, myself in Sydney and she in the Gold Coast at the time. When I had returned back home to Sydney we began to communicate via messaging applications and we found a very sweet way with one another.
Ariel brought a lightness and a sense of humour that would, and still does, brighten up my day.
Through our conversations she reminds me that life can be fun and that there can be so much joviality simply being who I am rather than with all the outside distractions and so called ‘life-enhancing’ substances
When the time came for me to return back to the UK, Ariel had made such a significant impact on my life I could not but take our friendship back with me. Her open heart and constant willingness to express and support me touched me deeply.
Our digital communication continued, and throughout the following year, which was a very turbulent, up-and-down, mixed bag of a year, she not once pulled away, withdrew or measured her expression to make me feel better. And not once did she get fed up of talking about the same things/issues I would be bringing up. She just continued to listen, share and love.
Ariel’s dedication and commitment to our relationship cannot be negated by any measure, especially when one considers the distance between us and the relative new-born nature of our friendship.
Ariel shows no expectations in friendship – she not once asked me to be a certain way with her. In fact, during ourfriendship she has steadily and continually confirmed me as a man who has been taking steps to reignite the tender heart within that I had veiled for so long.
To be able to speak with someone of my age group who gave me the space to be myself with all my imperfections, to go through my issues, be reactive and make mistakes, flipped on its head what I considered a friend to be. Her way showed me what a true connection looks and feels like in the flesh. Ariel sets the standard for what it means to be a genuine companion.
During 2017 Ariel embarked on a relationship with a beautiful young man in her neck of the woods. One might expect that the pen pal from abroad would drop off the radar after this, but no. Once again, Ariel broke the mould in how friendships work. Her absolute openness and honesty in both relationships gave the platform to continue and deepen on both fronts, in the most glorious way.
We know there is no reason to be afraid to have close friends that are the opposite gender and remain steady in who we are
I have a beautiful husband named Luke and there is never any complication between us that I have such a close relationship with Michael, purelybecause Michael and I are so clear with our relationship being a deep and beautiful friendship. While spending time with Michael recently in Vietnam, Luke joined us in hanging out and catching up and the ease and fun we all could share together was exquisite. Michael and my relationship is clean-cut and there are never any hidden agendas. This is why Luke naturally has full trust in our relationship and really enjoys the connection we have. It also goes to show how strong and in-love Luke and I are that nothing couldever come between us. In that, we recognise that opening ourselves up to deep relationships with our friends, supports us to love each other even more. There is no on and off switch.
Luke and I know that love is never restricted to just two people, but for love to be true it needs to be expressed with everyone. Romantic and intimate partners will of course have another aspect of physical intimacy that friends won’t have, but that does not mean they can’t express the same depth, openness and beauty with everyone else. These qualities lay within each us and anyone reading this, the very same qualities Michael and I so dearly, openly and joyfully share.
Not once have I felt second best or of a lower importance in her life. That is something that I admire and treasure.
As I write this I am travelling back from a 2-week trip to Vietnam where, after 2 years, I got to see and be with Ariel in person once again. On top of that I had the pleasure of meeting her gorgeous husband, Luke. The three of us spent time together in the beautiful town of Hoi An, having lots of laughs, walks and revelatory conversations. It was amazing to see how not one bit of the digital communication was put on, or fake.
Ariel does not reserve her high level of open, honest and loving relationship for the few. I have seen her approach people from all walks of life, old or young, short or tall, well-known or unfamiliar with her heart open and her eyes sparkling – a true role model for the community.
I count myself blessed to know Ariel, and to have her in my life.