I really can't emphasize enough what a difference our friends make in our lives. Especially when going through some type of trauma or trouble.
Honestly, if I'd been forced to go through these past nine months without friends and family I'm not sure I would have survived it all. I mean I know we humans are tough, and we have many defenses for our own protection. But we build up walls and become "harder" people and we run into those sad folks who have drifted into that place all the time, right? Or, we become isolated and begin to think differently, always forming opinions based upon what we watch on television or read in the papers and never having the ability to see things from another perspective because we aren't surrounded by people who may offer them. Having human faces on any issue changes how we view it. Isolation makes us more self-absorbed. Its the "hermit syndrome" if you will - simply turning us into humans who only consider ourselves and our own ideas. Its not healthy and it doesn't make for well-rounded, interesting individuals who can be instruments of peace and understanding in the world.
I see the value of friends in so many ways since going through this difficult time. I'm incredibly grateful to have already had good strong friendships to take advantage of, and those relationships are stronger than ever now. Its our friends that get us out into the world when we are in danger of eschewing it. And its out friends who, at the end of the day, help us maintain and nurture our humanness. I'm so incredibly grateful for mine.