You know when you have those days where you really think about certain aspects of your life? Well, today was one of those days for me...specifically with respect to my girlfriends that I've met over the last 2+ years.
Let me sidetrack for a second - a lot of my friends right now are in these 'transitional' phases in their lives (my term, not theirs). One friend feels like she's the only one of her friends still single...another feels likes she's the only one of her friends having a baby...another feels like she's the only one getting married...another...and another...I could go on about me, my friends, and my acquaintances and the various ways we/they feel out of touch with their current friends. Maybe it's the age group - we're (or at least most) are in our 30's and maybe the 30's are that weird decade where people move in different directions...
Well, either way, about 2+ years ago, I (in my 30's) was feeling pretty transitional myself. I was a new mommy, in a new neighborhood with no close friends nearby, not working (by choice), and feeling a bit detached from some of my friends because of all those circumstances...and I felt lonely.
And I realized something...I had to find new friends - not replacements for my old friends, but additions to my circle because I needed people who would listen, understand, and give me advice about my kid's sleeping, eating and shitting habits. Because let's face it, for better or worse, that was my life at that moment.
It was like dating (don't laugh - it's true). I had to muster up the nerve to ask another mommy in my gym class for her number so we could make a play date. I had to swallow my pride and ask some other moms if I could join them for lunch after music class. I had to join classes with my daughter without knowing a single person, hoping that maybe there would be another person in there I could be friends with. I had my mother set me up on a blind "date" with her friend's daughter. I went to Barnes and Noble and struck up conversations with strangers in the hopes of meeting new friends. Seriously, how different is that from trying to meet Mr. Right?
And an amazing thing happened...I made friends. And 2 years later, these women are no longer my "mommy" friends...they're my friends. period. We've all gone through a lot the past two years...from back to work sagas...to marriage issues...to new babies...or struggles with having more babies...to in-law troubles...basically all life issues. Some of my friends are back at work (like me) and others are back part time and others haven't gone back. Yet, we have formed a real bond as friends despite any differences we may have and it's really nice to see our kids grow up together. Some of these friends aren't just my friends, but Mike's friends as well.
So I guess my other realization is that as your life changes, so do the people around you and putting yourself out there is hard no matter what 'transition' you may be in.