Monday, July 2, 2012

The Power of Friendship

After a busy weekend, I realized the month has changed yet again.  I can hardly believe that we are halfway through 2012.  It is amazing how fast time really flies.  Before I get on with my post, I would just quickly like to share with you what I was up to this weekend:  the Dirty Girl Mud Run.  This was the 5K event I was training for and it was a blast!  If you have a similar event in your area, I would highly recommend getting a group of girlfriends together and doing it.  I am not a "play in the mud" kind of gal, but this was really a fun challenge.  Everyone I talked to that participated was in agreement:  let's do it again!

If this wasn't fun, would we all be smiling?  

I am always excited at the beginning of the month.  It is time for me to reflect on how things are going in my life:  what is working and what needs some improvement.  As part of my Happiness Project, I set three goals in each of three areas and focus on them for a whole month.  Many of them become a habit and carry over, but some are just a 30-day goal that I would like to achieve.  I am looking forward to my goal-setting later today.  

I just finished a fun book called MWF Seeking BFF:  My Yearlong Search For a New Best Friend by Rachel Bertsche.  This book caught my eye when I was searching for some new reading material, so I picked it up from my local library and dove right in.  Since we had just moved, I thought it was something that I could relate to.  As it turned out, I really enjoyed the book and there is a lot of insight on friendship intertwined with the stories of her "girl dates."        

Friendships seem to take a backseat once you become a mom.  I have heard many moms say that they don't feel like they have any time to do anything for themselves:  it's always for everyone else.    If there is one thing I learned from this book, it's that having good friendships is vital for your well-being.  You need to make the time to build your social network.  I know that after I had my first child and began staying at home, I felt isolated for a long time.  When he was about five months old, I began to google mom's groups in my area.  I found one that I wanted to try and got up the nerve to go.  It wasn't long and we branched off and started our own group.  It saved my sanity!  Before I knew it, I had weekly playgroups to attend and some occasional nights out.  As our family grew, these women helped out by bringing meals when we had a new baby and we began to try activities outside of our group together.  We had a lot of fun and always joked that the playgroups were more for us than the kids!

Once we had our third child, though, I began to find it hard to participate in the playgroups as I was balancing two nap schedules and running a child to and from preschool a few days a week.  Our youngest son was a challenge when he was a baby (and can be still!) and I spent a lot of time at home alone with the kids again.  It was a very difficult time in my life and something needed to change.  I ended up heading back to the gym where I met several women through the classes that I took.  It was great to have some adult interaction and I always left feeling very happy.  I also began to hang out with some moms that I had met through my son's preschool class.  It felt so wonderful to connect with these women and it brought my spirits right up.  

A few of the ladies I met through my son's preschool class have become dear friends to me.  In the beginning it was just a friendship among the moms and kids, but we decided to introduce our husbands after awhile and planned some family events.  We all had a wonderful time and would try to get another one in the books before we got too busy with everyday life.  It was a good idea to commit to something a month in advance than to try to pull together a last-minute gathering.  We miss our little group, but were fortunate to have a few hours together on our trip back over the weekend.  I think it is pretty awesome that my son's fondness for two little girls turned into such great friendships for me!

If this book taught me anything, it's that I need to make the time to keep in touch with my "old" friends and meet new people as well.  I will by no means be placing an ad to find a new BFF, but I will step out of my comfort zone a bit and take the time to strike up conversations with people who I don't know (or don't know well) and see where life takes us.  There are also friendships that I had in my life that have faded that I would love to revisit again.  Whatever happens, I will forever be grateful for all of the friendships that I have had over the years.  If you really think about it, everyone played a role in who you are today!



1 comment:

  1. I like this one. I'm horrible at making friends. Kara has set up play dates so she has adult interaction during the summer.