Why Moms May Need Friends Most of All

Our children’s books are filled with great friendships, and I’ve been quite moved by the sweet relationship of Charlotte and Wilbur in Charlotte’s Web. 

My dear friend from high school, Melissa,  was moving to the East Coast, and she tried to gather us all for one last hoorah! before she left.  We were supposed to meet for lunch—it would be about a 35 minute drive for me, very doable, but then life happened, and I told them all I couldn’t make it.  Another friend was depending on me for a ride, and in the end, the lunch just didn’t happen. I assured everybody that as soon as things “settled down,” we’d have to get together again.  We never did, and now Melissa  lives in Virginia.  I look back and the reasons I decided I couldn’t go now seem pretty trivial.  Yes, we were trying to get our house ready to show, but you know, I could have made it all work,  and the house would have still sold if I had gone to lunch.  But I missed an opportunity to reconnect with those dear women.  Goodness, Melissa and I were going through the same emotional draining experience of a move, and I could have cried on her shoulder or at least laughed about it all.   Instead, I decided to tackle my challenges alone, thinking friendship needed to be saved more sunnier days.   And yet friendship is just what makes our days sunny.

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So, when a friend called the week we were moving in, saying she was going to only be in town for the week, I guess I wised up.  When she came, my dryer wasn’t working, the lawnmower wasn’t working, there wasn’t a lot of food in our fridge, and except for a few public spaces and our underwear drawers, our house was still mostly unpacked.

She had her concerns too—the usual, “One of my kid’s is snotty, and the other has diarrhea,” but I told her it didn’t matter.  Come anyway.

We hung out together all day, just like teenagers.  We even ordered pizza.  And then we really talked.  We didn’t talk just about the surface stuff, but about the stuff that really mattered—our families, great books, religion, God, and the crazy world we lived in.

I was already appreciative that she read my blog, and frequently left comments, but I was really touched when she said she was actually doing some of the things I promised you guys I was going to start doing.  She was playing tennis twice a week with a friend, while I am sure I’ll be getting to that any day now.  She was teaching her son to be a gentleman and open doors for her, where I had kind of forgotten that goal.  And she had already finished Charlotte’s Web, listening to in on the way from California to her kids.

“What?” I asked incredulously.

“Well you told us we should read it.”

“Well I haven’t even finished it yet!” I retorted.  “I should have finished it first!”  She shrugged her shoulders.

So basically, Rach and I are are the yin and the yang—I come up with the ideas, and she actually executes them.  So I got back on track with Charlotte’s Web.  Tennis, anyone?

Seriously guys, friendships and happiness are closely linked.  Get the list on happiness here.

How do your friends help you?

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3 comments

  1. So making friends has been one of the hardest aspects of the military life for me. On one hand every time we move i meet so many wonderful military spouses, who, by the end of the tour, I consider a few to be close friends. The problem is that a close friendship doesn’t happen overnight, and by the time it’s finally cultivated its time to say goodbye and start all over again. Also, I feel like I have a lot of surface relationships, but not a super close friend I can just totally unload on. I feel lonely sometimes too. Can I blame it on this lifestyle or is this common for all busy moms out there? I’ve been here 18 months and am still searching for a best friend.

  2. I see so many wonderful women who have so much potential, but then I realize that it’s me that’s not investing in the friendships—I just don’t have the energy and time to make things happen as much but when I do, I realize just how much I needed it.

    I think friendships can happen faster though if you’re able to go on a get away—even for 24 hours with a friend of just have a few girls night outs–I feel more relaxed in those occasions, not worrying about who is stuffing a straw up his nose.

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