I wrote something for a fellow blogger recently. In the piece, I talked about how much pressure there is on women to do everything “right” in our society. I even feel pressure from other women to squeeze in “me” time. A lot of times, for me, making time for the “me” time causes more stress than the “me” time relieves. Frankly, as a working Mom, my time with my kids feels limited. I generally don’t want to spend my time off away from them.
I used to be better about making time for girlfriends. My Mom and I do something, just the two of us, maybe two or three times a year. My best friend comes through town once or twice a year, and I get to spend a little time with her.
It’s bad. I need to do better. But, it becomes just one more thing I need to do. I’m tired.
I planned to go and see my best friend, who lives three hours away, last May. But, my daughter had to have a tonsillectomy. The summer was busy, but I had it in my mind that we would get there this year.
Mission Accomplished! On the Saturday morning of Labor Day weekend, the kids and I left for our road trip, and we returned Sunday night, leaving me with one more day off at home before I had to return to work. It was so nice to spend time with her and her family, and for her to spend some time with my kids. I guess it shows that it doesn’t have to be just “me” time to spend time with friends.
On Monday, I got to spend 2 1/2 hours with another old friend. I have known both of these ladies since Junior High School. I kind of hate to admit that we are talking over 30 years. Wow. When I left my friend’s house on Monday, I thought about what a wonderful weekend it had been, getting a chance to spend time with two of my girlfriends.
What also struck me was how easy it was. I’m an introvert, so small talk is tiring to me. But, on Monday, my friend and I talked for over two hours straight and I’m sure we could have talked for more than three times that if life wasn’t calling. Unlike the feeling of being drained, that I so often feel when interacting with people, I felt energized. I found myself wondering why.
It makes me realize why I’ve stayed in touch with them over all of this time. They want what is best for me, and I for them. But, there isn’t a lot of advice giving. Just listening. I love that.
Is it easy because we’ve known each other so long? They have seen me at my dopiest and nerdiest, during my times of worst judgment, but also at my best. There is no fooling them, so I suppose I don’t waste the energy trying. They have been there for me, in the joyous times and the devastating times.
Is it because we don’t talk that often? We don’t get on each others’ nerves because we are truly only spending quality time?
I don’t know the answer, but I’m blessed to have a couple of other girlfriends who also come to mind. Memorial Day weekend, 2016, my husband, the kids and I went to see my old college roommate and her family had a party for us! When my brother passed away, a very old friend (we’re talking since the age of 3) watched my kids during the funeral service, even though I hadn’t talked to her in quite a long time.
Please understand, it’s not that these people do things for me that makes me feel warmly toward them. It’s the love I feel from them, that’s shown in these gestures. Sometimes, the gesture is just simply making time.
We find ourselves appreciating different things as we get older. You’ve probably heard that saying – people come into our lives for a reason, a season, or a lifetime. I’m so grateful for my girlfriends who have been willing to hang around for a lifetime.