I loved my little family. It was everything I had ever wanted. Yet very quickly I realized that I was alone. I had my husband, my baby and my family, but my friends where suddenly miles away (both physically and personally). None of them had babies. Heck, few of them were married. They had jobs, boyfriends and graduation. I had diapers, laundry and grocery shopping. I had taken an early exit and they were still heading down the highway.
The closest of those friendships soon became my
God must have known that I was unable to make this one-on-one thing work, because through the most random of events, I found myself smack dab in the middle of a mom's group/playgroup/gimme the coffee I've been up all night group. These seven women were a breath of fresh air. Our mornings together offered more than a distraction from the day to day (though that in itself would have been enough). They offered encouragement, advice, laughter, compassion, and friendship. For 5 years, once a week, eight women sat in a living room scattered with toys, sippy cups and pacifiers sipping coffee while 16 children around us. Our husbands often asked, "Is it worth it?" The answer always rang the same. "YES!" Those mornings will live in my heart for all time. These women walked through the trenches with me.
More recently, I have found myself in a bible study small group that has called my bluff, kicked my butt, and offered no apologies. They have also picked me up, carried my load, and dried my tears. I think I remember a bit of laughter and sex talk as well. Sorry mom and dad. That was inappropriate. Seriously though, we have a good time. They encouraged me to write this blog on a day when I wanted nothing to do with it and they support my efforts even when I'm not sure they should. They offer balance to my life when I offer mayhem.
For the first time in my life, I know that I have friends. More importantly, I am committed to being a good friend. Somedays insecurities still get the best of me and sometimes I still expect to much, but I hope that I am approaching my relationships with less pressure. I want to value the matchlessness of each relationship instead of longing for inclusiveness. I don't know if I'll ever be able to fix the relationships that I have ruined, but I'll never stop trying. If I can come this far, anything's possible.