• loyalty

Loyal | ˈloiəl | adjective

Giving or showing firm and constant support or allegiance to a person or institution

Being back in Austin around friends I’ve known pretty much my whole life always makes me thankful for a group that’s been through a lot together, through tons of ups and downs yet still remains friends and probably will for a long time. I’ve done a lot to push people away through this span of friendship so I am deeply appreciative that people have moved past that to allow me back in.

Within all of these thoughts running through my mind during my workout this morning, the term loyalty came to mind.

Maybe because I’ve been jammin the Kendrick / Rihanna song on repeat, but I was thinking about it :

  • What makes you loyal to someone?
  • How long can you be loyal to someone when they act in offensive, harmful, etc ways?
  • Where do you draw the line? At what point do you cut someone off? For how long do you hang in there being loyal to someone who might not deserve it?
  • Is there a sliding scale of loyalty?
  • How do you show someone you’re loyal?

[Verse 4: Kendrick Lamar]
Tell me who you loyal to
Is it money? Is it fame? Is it weed? Is it drink?
Is it comin’ down with the loud pipes and the rain?
Big chillin’, only for the power in your name
Tell me who you loyal to
Is it love for the streets when the lights get dark?
Is it unconditional when the ‘Rari don’t start?
Tell me when your loyalty is comin’ from the heart

A friend of mine has a long, long time friend who got into drugs pretty bad. Like real bad, bad to the point of jeopardizing his family, his health, his life. The addict repeatedly acted in selfish, harmful and alienating ways, yet my friend stuck with him and continues to stick with him, even when most others have let go.

[Verse 5: Rihanna & Kendrick Lamar]
Tell me who you loyal to
Do it start with your woman or your man? (Mmm)
Do it end with your family and friends? (Mmm)
Or you’re loyal to yourself in advance?
I said, tell me who you loyal to
Is it anybody that you would lie for?
Anybody you would slide for?
Anybody you would die for?
That’s what God for

Another friend told me a story about a friend ripping them off in a transaction for no more than $200, probably less. It ended their friendship on the spot… and that was years ago… and they were close…

In the final scene of the Fate of the Furious Vin Diesel’s character says this about family.

“You’ve heard me say that, ‘You never turn your back on family.’ And I wanna thank you all for never turning your back on me.”

Have you thought about how you define loyalty? I really haven’t. I don’t have a concrete, personal foundation of where it starts and where it ends. Is it a forever thing? A one time choice? Is there even a way to do that? 

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