I used to think that I didn’t need females in my life. They were too dramatic, too back stabbing, too gossipy, etc… I now know I couldn’t live my life without them. It’s 1:30 on a Saturday afternoon and I’m trying to figure out logistically, how to get to Austin with my boys, just to give one of my girlfriends a hug (like one of those, not gonna let you go for awhile ones). She’s had a rough month, quite a couple in fact, and I feel like my phone conversation awhile ago is just not enough. Would she do the same for me? Absolutely!
These are the types of female BBs that I have in my life right now. BB…what? Bosom Buddies. No, not the old tv show. They are my confidants (yes, like Golden Girls), my cronys, my ride or die friends. (You’re welcome for all my 80’s TV references.) These are the friends that wouldn’t bail me out of jail, because they’d be in there with me. Although, I’m good to never go back there (but you get the idea).
What happened to make this change? I changed. In all of my recovery and finding myself, I realized I needed close friends-yes, those Golden Girls. I lost quite a few friends/acquaintances when I stopped drinking. Well, these were the people I thought were friends. Either I pulled away from them or they pulled away from me. Some people just don’t know how to hang out with a sober person. But, I’m not that different. In fact, I’m much more fun sober than drinking. But I get it. Maybe it makes you take a longer look at your drinking habits, maybe you don’t realize that tons of fun things still occur when we don’t go out and drink, or that I’m totally cool with you drinking and me not. Whatever it is/was, I was left pretty lonely. I had one bestie from middle school, one from recovery, and one that I met through church and that was about it.
So where did I find these other friends? I got uncomfortable. I put myself out there. I joined a bible study in my neighborhood. I joined a moms group at church. I started to go out to dinner and coffee with more women and play dates with our kids. I let my guard down (mostly). I talked (sometimes too much-it’s a weakness of mine). I listened. I found similarities for the first time in other females, instead of looking for the differences.
I started asking other women to do things instead of waiting for the invitation. I reached out whenever they crossed my mind via text, email, e-cards, or phone calls. I offered to help them from small to big things. I never expected anything in return and I still don’t. I got out of myself for a change and focused on embracing others. I have watched these females support other females through marriages, divorces, deaths, births, and everything in between.
We laugh together, cry together, gripe about hubbies and kids together, lose and gain weight together, and pray for each other. They have been my panic phone calls and my rejoice phone calls. It might be days or it might be months between conversations, but the bond is always there and we pick up right where we left off. I have about 15 girlfriends right now that would be at my home in a heartbeat, if I needed them. Whether they were coming from down the street in North Texas or Austin or Michigan.
I truly feel that God has brought each of these women in to my life for a reason. I also believe that all the “friends” before were for a reason too. It’s super hard making friends as a grown up. Yes, the mommy acquaintances are nice, but I’m talking real, true, ride or die friends. There are lots of places to meet them, but you have to be open to it or you won’t even recognize that you have little angels all around you. So if you don’t have those friends yet, keep looking. Get uncomfortable. Listen to that wee, small voice in your head that has been telling you to go do something new and meet new people. I did and my life is so much fuller because of it!