Today is Valentine's Day and all over the world this day is celebrated by teenagers, lovers and married couples. Love has its own universal language. The concept of love is basically the same in all cultures although the living out of it could differ. There are also many different types of love. There is romantic love and the love between family members. There is the love that is more duty bound, with a similar goal in mind and a playful love, which is a more casual love. There is also self-love and the love between friends and then the love we should all strive for, Agape, a selfless love. One thing that is universal of all people is our need for love. It is part of our DNA. Our Creator wove it into our souls. After the creation, God saw that it was not good for man to be alone. Relationships are a God given gift. Even the most reticent of us have a longing for the companionship of another human being.Very early in childhood children instinctively start reaching out to other children. Just last week I watched in amazement how the face of an eight months old baby lit up as a little two year old girl walked into the room. His eyes followed her everywhere and when she came close he tried to reach out to her. Although very young children do not really start interacting actively with each other during play until they are a bit older, they enjoy the company of other children. All through our lives we come into contact with people and with some of these we forge friendships. Some of these friendships are very short lived, but some are for life. Others are "seasonal", lasting only through a phase or a similar situation which threw or drew us together.However long the lifespan of a friendship is, they all have something in common, we learn from them and grow through them, even the worst of friendships have an enriching effect on us, as we are taught valuable lessons through them about life, people and ourselves.Every friendship has something about them to celebrate, even if it is just to rejoice that you are now free from that friendship!!! The sad thing is that we very often start to take friendships for granted, we forget to treasure them, and value them. Each friendship is very unique, with their own unique challenges and joys. Every friend we make reveals something new about ourselves. Anais Nin said this about friendship: "Each friend represents a world in us, a world possibly not born until they arrive, and it is only by this meeting that a new world is born." So true and worth pondering about. I have had many wonderful friends in my lifetime and each one of them was so incredibly special, and everyone I have presently in my life I value and treasure. They have helped form me, they've taught/ still teaching me, they've broadened my horizons, loved me, listened to me, comforted me and made me laugh.My most valued friendships I have are those within my family. The saying goes that friends are the family we choose for ourselves, but if they weren't family I would have chosen them as my friends. Nothing can ever take the place of my family, their friendship is indeed far above all the riches of the world.Each one of my friends is a flower in my bouquet. There is the bright yellow daisy - my lifetime childhood friend, the delicate purple beauty of the violet - the one who has known me before I even knew myself, and named me, the cosmos , the rose, the fairy bluebell, the carnation, the forget-me-not's, the sturdy geraniums, lilies, poppies, tulips, honeysuckle and lavender. The iris, marigold and pansies. Each one adding their unique fragrance and beauty to my life. Thank you, dear friends, for your gift of friendship!!!If you flutter by here, please share your thoughts on friendship with the readers here, and pay tribute to them. I would love to hear from you.