Best Friends

Happy 38th Birthday to Dr. Santresa Glass

Dr. Santresa L. Glass

(Photo courtesy of Dr. Santresa L. Glass)

Although you’re hoping that this will be the year I propose to you, don’t hold your breath; that’s never going to happen. Your endless and undesired pursuit of me is becoming, to be frank, frightening. I have repeatedly told you that I have no interest in an intimate relationship with you, but you don’t seem to get it. Some people never learn, though. You will have to settle for fantasizing about me using the limited pictures of me available.

Now that we are clear about those things, hopefully, I want this to be your best year. For the remainder of the year, invest more in yourself, in your dreams and aspirations. Before we can pour into others, we need our cups to be full—and running over—which permits us to give freely. When our cups are running over, this means we have so much to give to others—without taking from what we need. Others have benefited greatly from your giving, your kindness, your thoughtfulness. The time has come for you to show yourself gratitude. You are worth it!

Random note: I hate the Falcons! #RiseDown

So, this very discursive piece is my attempt to let you know I love you and that I’m grateful that God has gifted (and cursed—lol!) me with you for another year. Without question, it’s a blessing (and cursing—lol!) to have you as a best friend. What I love the most about you—besides your wholesomeness—is your ratchetness. And you know how much I love women with a perfect blend of class and ratchetness (i.e. Joseline Hernandez and Keyshia Cole).

Well, get ready for these songs I’m about to sing to you! It’s about to go down! A concert.

As Jack would say, “And now, a song.”

Love ya,

Dr. Antonio Maurice Daniels

University of Wisconsin-Madison

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Happy 35th Birthday to Dr. Santresa L. Glass

Santresa L. Glass

Courtesy of Santresa L. Glass

I want to take this opportunity to wish Dr. Santresa L. Glass, my best friend, a Happy Birthday! San, as she’s affectionately known, is such a loving, caring and thoughtful person. She’s passionate about friendship and love. Whenever I have good news to share, Dr. Glass is always more excited about the news than I am. In a world saturated with jealousy and envy, one must truly treasure that aforementioned aspect of a person. We have a friendship like none other. It’s a joy to wake up each day and know that you have someone in your corner with the love and support that Santresa extends. Yes, my life is great because of Jesus dwelling on the inside of me, and Dr. Glass is one of those precious treasures He’s given to me that makes life even more special.

Although we disagree 99% of the time, our ardent discourses always add to our friendship rather than take away from it. Too many people are looking for “yes men” and “yes women,” but San and I seek authenticity, and that’s exactly what we receive from one another 100% of the time. We always honor each other’s authenticity because it comes from a genuine place of love. Dr. Glass and I embrace each other’s differences and those differences help us to learn so much from one another.

One of the dimensions of our friendship I appreciate the most is how she’s able to give me valuable insights from a woman’s perspective and I’m able to offer her meaningful insights from a man’s perspective. You would be really surprised how we’ve used this “insider knowledge” to our advantage.

While many still believe we have a sexually intimate relationship, our friendship is not based on sexual relations at all. We share an intimacy that is much deeper and rewarding than what people experience in relationships involving sexual intercourse. The essence of our intimacy and love is best encapsulated and delineated by William Shakespeare’s Sonnet 116. Our love and intimacy cannot even be eradicated by the ravages of time.

San, I’m so proud of you and everything you’ve accomplished. Whatever you set your mind to do, you conquer—no matter what challenges and problems you encounter. As you know, I’m only a call, text, tweet or Facebook message away. It’s my prayer that God’s Grace will manifest into your life on this day an abundance of spiritual elevation, divine health, love, peace, joy, happiness, wealth, faith, favor and miracles.

I love you and want you to have the best birthday ever!

Happy Birthday, Dr. Santresa L. Glass!

Dr. Antonio Maurice Daniels

University of Wisconsin-Madison

Happy 34th Birthday to Santresa L. Glass

Santresa L. Glass

(Photo Credit: Santresa L. Glass)

For over 13 years, Santresa Glass has gotten on my nerves and continues to get on my nerves. Although I have had to endure her getting on my nerves for such a long time, she’s unquestionably my best friend.  San, as she’s affectionately known, is a beautiful person, inside and out.  One of the central reasons why I cherish our friendship is she’s never looking to simply use me to obtain something she wants or needs; she loves me just for who I am.  We share a metaphysical relationship and love.  Our love for one another is so deep that many people think we are intimately involved—she can only dream that this will happen one day. Our relationship is akin to the relationship Oprah Winfrey and Gayle King share.  I will always treasure our relationship.

When a problem arises in my life, she does not contribute it; she’s there to support me through the problem. We always know that we can count on each other.

If more people could experience a relationship like the one we have, the world would be a better place.

San, I’m super proud of all of your accomplishments.  You know that I’ve witnessed the highs and lows life has presented you.  The lows have been pretty low and the highs have been pretty high. Through it all, you’ve made it.  You have blossomed into a remarkable woman.  In a few weeks, you will earn your doctoral degree in Organizational Leadership—what an awesome accomplishment!  (On the official day you complete all requirements for your doctoral degree, I will pen a piece focused solely on this accomplishment.)

Although I’ve always cherished our friendship, it was not until 2009 that I truly understood just how valuable of a best friend she is.  We never become too old to learn.  Life has taught me that there are special elements about the friendship that are absent in my other friendships.  What’s odd about our chemistry is we disagree 99% of the time.  I am right 100% of the time, however.

It’s such a great feeling to know that our friendship is not dependent on what I can do for her, and it’s wonderful to know that what I can do for her does not define our friendship.

Our relationship is envied by so many that we’re responsible for a number of people just popping up with “best friends” all of a sudden and/or falsely characterizing their relationships with others as “best friends” when they know full well this characterization is dishonest.

Today, in my own unique way, I want to wish Santresa L. Glass a Happy 34th Birthday!  Enjoy your day and your day off.

Love you,

Antonio Maurice Daniels

University of Wisconsin-Madison

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Happy 33rd Birthday to Santresa L. Glass

Santresa L. Glass

Look at those cheekbones! Lol!

I want to take this opportunity to wish Santresa L. Glass, my best friend, a Happy 33rd Birthday!  I appreciate your friendship and love.  Each day, my understanding of the value of your friendship and love becomes clearer.  I am so proud of all the things you’ve accomplished.  At 33 years old, you are proving to get better with time.  Although some people believe that your posts on Facebook (including your pictures), your tweets, and Instagram pictures/posts are attempts to present yourself as being more than you really are, those individuals truly don’t know you.  If they really knew you, as I do, they would know that the glow they see is authentic happiness.  I may (notice the emphasis on “may”) tolerate people attacking me for a little while, but one thing I will not tolerate is any attacks on my best friend, Santresa L. Glass.  I don’t mind getting life without the possibility of parole for annihilating anyone who would try to attack and do you harm.  Believe that!

I’m truly proud of you for being so close to completing your doctoral degree in Organizational Leadership at Argosy University.  Although some are already trying to downplay and criticize you for obtaining your doctoral degree online, they are simply “toxic mushrooms” (I’m pretty sure you can appreciate that term).  I cannot wait to read your doctoral committee approved version of your dissertation!  Oh yeah, for the haters, Santresa is required to pen a dissertation.  It will not be long before I get to call you “Dr. Glass.”  Sounds great, right?

You are beautiful!  You always have been.  Time has only ameliorated your beauty.  You’re not pretending to be beautiful—you simply are!

No one can ever question your authenticity.  You have never been afraid to express who you truly are.  You embrace not only the great things about yourself but also your imperfections.  One of the things I love most about you is your authenticity.  When I’m talking to you, I always know that I’m talking to San and not some inauthentic persona you’ve created to please others.

On this day, take time to reflect on the many blessings God has bestowed to you.  He has a tremendous number of more blessings for you.  Enjoy YOUR day.  Have the best birthday ever.  Again, happy birthday!

Love you,

Antonio Maurice Daniels

University of Wisconsin-Madison

Happy 32nd Birthday Santresa L. Glass

I wish my best friend Santresa L. Glass a happy birthday today.  You are my heart.  On this day, enjoy yourself because you deserve it.  Make more time just for yourself because you’ve given everyone else so much of yourself.  I want you to know that you’re so special to me.  I’m grateful for all the things you’ve done for me.  I love you!  At some point in the day, I will sing you a song.  Lol!  Again, Happy 32nd Birthday my best friend!

Antonio Maurice Daniels

University of Wisconsin-Madison

Read the Expiration Date: Some Friendships Need to End

Have you ever just become so exhausted with a friendship that you have to keep wondering why you are torturing yourself by remaining friends?  If you are constantly having more unpleasant days in a friendship than positive days, then you need to consider allowing that friendship to end.  Although all friendships will experience some conflicts, you should not have to have a serious battle with your friends every month.  When you have to go to war with your friends every month, then you have all of the evidence you need to end this friendship.  Seriously, why waste your time dealing with these too frequent burdens that your friends cause for you?  If people are truly your friends, you’re going to gain more positive things from them than negative things.

When we give someone the title of “friend,” it seems like many of us begin to allow an individual to take advantage of us because we idolize the title too much instead of truly assessing the relationship with the person we have given the title.  It does not matter how long or short a period of time you have been friends with a person he or she is not too great for you to not engage in a meaningful evaluation of his or her worth in your life.  While it may seem easier to get rid of those friends you have known only a short period of time, it can be much more of a challenge for you to terminate friendships with people you have known longer.  The truth is you just have to accept the reality that some friendships you have maintained for a long period of time might need to end for your (and their) benefit.

Although everyone needs a friend, you should not allow a friend to cause you constant pain.  When a friend becomes more of a burden than a help for you, then you know that this person is no longer your friend.

If a person is truly your friend, you will be able to value his or her words.  A true friend will not tell you lies just to get what he or she wants.  A true friend is not deceitful.  We have to learn that we cannot call everyone a friend.  Moreover, we have to learn that we cannot keep maintaining old friendships that have really become burdens.  When we try to avoid the truth about friendships that have turned into burdens, then we can overlook those friends who have really become our enemies.

Don’t let anyone take advantage of you.  We are most vulnerable to being taken advantage of by those we call our friends.  It is important for you to know that those who you call your friends can take advantage of you just like anyone else can.  While this reality can be quite hurtful, this is the reason why we have to begin to engage in close assessments of our friendships and eliminate those friendships that are not producing positive benefits for us.

Please don’t allow the fact that you have been in a long friendship with someone to keep you from letting the friendship expire.  You must face the truth that some long friendships need to be terminated because over the years things and people change, leading to those friendships not being based on what they originally were founded on.  When you are conducting your close evaluation of your current friendships, think about the things that developed those friendships.  Are those things still there or have they changed in some substantive way?  By seriously wrestling with this question in your assessment of your friendships, you may realize that the reason that your friendships no longer seem like friendships is the things that started those friendships are no longer present or have changed in such a significant way.

Would you continue to take medicine for an illness that your doctor has informed you that you no longer have?  Of course, you would not.  Well, why continue friendships that no longer maintain the original things they were founded on?

Do you have friends that ask you to do something for them always but when you ask them to do something for you they always have an excuse about why they cannot do what you asked?  You may have never considered this before, but these kinds of friends can lead you to having real health problems.  These kinds of friends can consume too much of your physical, emotional, spiritual, and mental energy.  It is not selfish to ask and expect your friends to do what you ask of them from time to time, especially those friends who always ask you to do something for them and you always do it for them.

Make a wise decision for yourself today and end those friendships that are not good for you.

Antonio Maurice Daniels

University of Wisconsin-Madison