Married female seeks meaningful local friendship. Must Facebook appropriately, text banter effectively, caffeinate properly, proudly watch reality TV and never EVER drink white zinfandel. I promise to listen to your stories with large quantities of head nods, be honest but kind, and never, ever ask why you look so tired. I enjoy happy hours at sunset, being snarky and ignoring my children while chatting on the phone. References provided upon request.
Friends. For many of us, it's what makes the world go round. I've often prided myself on the tenure and quality of my friendships. Forever friends, Mom friends, couple friends--no matter what we were doing, spending time with these women always felt like a soft worn-in blanket-warm and comforting.
So when we moved to San Diego to be closer to my family last year, I wasn't really concerned. I mean, Lisa lives thousands of miles away and our friendship has endured. This was only an hour's drive from most of our friends!
And yes, many of them have slept soundly in our new guesthouse. We have driven back up there. It's been really fun. And I'm literally six houses away from my mom now--with whom I'm very close. (Even though she really likes to
control everything , ahem, I mean, give me really valuable advice all the time...)But I've come to a realization: I need to make some freakin' friends that I'm NOT related to that live within a ten mile radius. And then I came to another realization: It's damn hard to make new friends as an adult!
Being the new girl on the block ain't easy--I've caught myself several times trying to convince people that I'm not some friendless whorebag. My best friend lives in Chicago! And I have other friends too! Look, here's a picture! Look how much fun we were having in Vegas last month! I might as well wear a sign that reads: DON'T WORRY, I'M NOT A LOSER. Or maybe I should carry recommendation letters that attest to my pure heart and vodka drinking prowess? (Lisa, can you write one please?)
Last month, I was sitting in Starbucks when these two woman sat at the table next to me. I didn't think much of them until they proceeded to have THE BEST SHIT TALKING SESSION EVER. I mean, these ladies were on fire, full on hand gestures, giggling, even a high-fiving at one point. And as I stared at my unsweetened green iced tea and tried to magically turn it into a glass of cabernet, it clicked for me: I really missed having local girlfriends to meet up with.
Sure, I could call up my girls in my old hood. But between our conflicting schedules and commute time, it might be 2014 before we can get together. And yes, we still talk shit via text and email, but every once in a while a girl needs some face time to discuss who's being a jackass on Facebook this week. (Yes, if you post weirdly vague status updates or slutty bathroom mirror selfies, we'll be talking about you!)
It's not that I haven't met some really cool people down here, I certainly have. But I realize that the kind of friendships I'm looking for don't happen overnight--someone who knows your heart, someone who you can truly let your guard down with. But at least I've finally figured out who can handle an F bomb (after a few awkward moments), who to call in a pinch to carpool and who always has a welcoming smile at drop off. I haven't pulled the trigger and asked any of them out on a date--like lunch or coffee or happy hour--because what if they say no? What if my inappropriate comments (And there are so many!) make them squirm? What if they think I'm that working mom who never has time to volunteer in the classroom? (I totally am!) What if they don't drink wine or Starbucks? (Then it's not going to work out anyway...)
I often hide behind the fact that I'm incredibly busy, that between my full-time sales job and the travel that comes along with it, my writing and my family, there's just not much time left over. And it's true--most days I feel like I'm drinking from a fire hose that won't turn off. But maybe regardless of all that, I still need to make time for myself--and to make a little room in my life for some new GFs. Even though it may be a little awkward at first, they'll feel like a comfy soft blanket before I know it. Right? (This is where you just nod and say, RIGHT!)
I want to hear about your experiences making friends later in life! Was it hard? Easy? Painful?