Every mom needs a friend or two. Me, I have been so blessed in my friendships. I have so many types of friendships with so many different types of wonderful women. Last weekend I spent some glorious girl time in Colorado Springs with 8 of my dearest friends. I met all of these women in college. Since graduating in 2005, we fly from different states leaving work, husbands and kids behind, meeting together every year or two to celebrate our friendship. This year, our celebration surrounded the wedding of one of these dear friends. We spent so much time laughing, crying, and reconnecting. I wish we could be together every day just like it was in college, but long for the next time we can be together.
Now I know I am extremely lucky to have found these women. I know some of you may not even talk to the people you have gone to college or even high school with. As a mom, I have discovered how important it is to have friends, and how important it is to understand that to be a good friend, I don’t have to speak with them every day. Some I talk to daily, and others I talk to less often, but no matter what the length may be, they’re no less important to me.
Friendships are vital to moms. We can chat about our kids, husbands, even the weather. We can encourage, support, advise. These are the top 3 types of friendships I have found I have needed:
1. Besties: These are the friends that I feel comfortable enough to spill my struggles to. We share the ups/downs of motherhood. We encourage one another. I know not to get mad at one of them when she doesn’t text me back right away. These are the friendships that when I need a night out, a shoulder to cry on, or announcing a pregnancy (no, I’m not!), I go to them first. I have also found that these friendships take the most work. To have a true, strong friend you must be willing to sacrifice, put your own opinions of what you think is best aside, and make the effort! My bestie and I have differing views on vaccinations, childbirth, and in some areas of parenting. It’s great to learn from each other and I have learned to really accept differences from all sorts of moms.
2. Non-moms. It’s great to have friends that aren’t moms. I love to connect with these friends. I find sometimes I get in “Mommy mode” and my brain forgets I am a woman. It’s great to converse with someone who can stimulate me in other ways. It’s also a good check for me too – you don’t have to talk about “Mommy stuff.” These friendships remind me that I am more than just a mom.
3. Lifetime. My lifetime friends are those who I don’t talk to very much, but still connect with every so often and see every few years. I consider my college friends to be in this category.
This is me (right) and another one of my lifetime friends, Allison (left). We have been friends since birth. Our parents met in lamaze class and we were born 1 day apart. Almost 29 years later, we are still friends. There have been periods in our lives where we haven’t spoken, and living in different states makes it hard to be close, but Allison and I can always pick things up right where we left them.
I want to encourage all of you moms out there to connect with a friend, whether it’s a bestie, a non-mom, or a lifetime friend you haven’t talked to in awhile. It’s easy to get in the rut of mommyhood, but as moms we need to be in contact with other women. If you feel like you are alone, I encourage you to check out one of our upcoming playdates to meet someone new. Friendships, of any kind, take effort. If we take little steps, each of us can have fulfilling friendships for any season of life we are in.
Here are some ideas to connect with a friend or make a new one:
-invite a mom to come over to your house for a playdate
-say “Hi” to a fellow mom at the mall. Ask questions about her kids, her spouse, her work.
-go to a library story time
-grab a cup of coffee or ice cream one night after the kids go to bed.
-call a friend on the way home to/from work
-cook dinner for a friend
-engage in conversation with other moms at church/preschool/work
-have a mini-party at your house. Invite ladies you know to watch a fun show (like The Bachelorette!), craft, play games. Have each guest bring a snack to share.
-plan a moms weekend/nite out. Save up your change and splurge on yourself!
-introduce yourself to the mom on your street
-Skype a long distance friend
-send a letter to a friend you haven’t spoken to in awhile
I hope you can grow new/current friendships this week! My goal is to meet one new mom at our playdate this Thursday at the Westgate Fountain Splash Pad! Hope to meet you there!