Friday, October 1, 2010

A Lifetime is Not Too Long To Live As Friends

One of the amazing things in my life has been SEARCH for Christian Maturity, a nondenominational, but Christian program for high school youth. I made SEARCH in the fall of 1993, at 15, and last attended a weekend retreat in my area as a college freshman.

Aside from all the knowledge, maturity and faith gained through the program, I made an overflowing handful or two of very good, lifelong women friends.

Now, let's get something straight about a woman and her girlfriends. Girlfriends are essential. There's an email forward I've seen several times about the things girlfriends do for each other: we outlast fads, romantic relationships, vicious rumors and petty fights. We foster one another's children early and often; we make meals when meals are needed but not sought; and we offer that twenty-minute respite from the world, in the form of a conversation, a phone call, a chat. We keep each other sane.

And sane is something all of us mothers hope to remain.

I've had a very productive, but crazy, week at work. I've had several tantrum moments from my children. I've questioned whether or not I'm truly on the path I want to be on financially and professionally and whether or not my soul is singing because of the work I've chosen to do. And, oh, you know, I'm midway through my fourth pregnancy, which can throw every thought and hormone into a tailspin. But I'm OK!

Tonight I had the great pleasure of touching base with one of those lifelong friends I made 17 years ago at SEARCH. Although we now have seven children between us and my one more on the way, we've managed to stay friends all this time. She's one of those friends with whom I have the kind of relationship where we pick right back up where we last left off, whether that be seven days, seven months or more ago.

And our chat was a reminder to me that we really are a tribe, we mother warriors. We're thick and we're plentiful throughout the nation and the world. And none of us are ever alone. Whatever your kid just did, or your husband just said, or whatever thought you just had, someone else has experienced either the same thing or something equally horrible.

I'm fine, you're fine. We're all kicking ass and taking names. For sure, you deserve that coffee cake or bowl of whip cream or whatever your tired, resilient heart desires with your next cup of coffee.

Treat yourself, and, if you can remember her number, call up your girlfriend and treat her too. Give her the gift of a woman who knows her, who loves her and who understands just what life is like in her shoes.

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