Making friends has never been easy for me. While I admire those that are good at carrying on a light conversation, I am quite awkward about it; perhaps because silence doesn’t bother me. I don’t generally particularly enjoy large groups as they overwhelm me and I am also a bit of a homebody. This makes making new friends a challenge. All that being said, I love having friends. I need friends. I don’t expect that you will ever hear me say that I only need my husband and my children because I find that while I do wish to spend the majority of my time with them, I thrive when I also have meaningful interaction with others.
Two years ago, we decided to spend one year in our old college town where there just happened to be several people that I was close with. I didn’t need to make friends because I could slip in a comfortable groove with those that I already had. We had similar interests, values, and even children close in age. I loved it! For one year, I was in my element.
By the time we left, to my surprise, I had made so many new friends. In that year I became surrounded by beautiful women so different and yet like myself. Somehow, I had dropped the “on the outside of friendships” that I had come to accept as myself and replaced it with being one able to reach out and also reciprocate. And then we moved.
Now I find myself starting all over again. Only this time I am again out of my comfort zone. I am once again the one fighting to get past myself and my insecurities to find my place. My husband says that I have to take the awkward steps if I want to have the comfortable ones. He probably is right. And so I go to the community events, I struggle through conversations where I am not sure what to say and would be okay with companionable silence, and I have learned a few things.
1. Children are a wonderful ice-breaker and they are a bit of a buffer (should I admit that?).
2. I can push myself to go outside of my comfortable spot but I can do that within the realm of accepting my personality.
3. The easiest way to make friends is to join people in similar interests.
4. I am in no hurry because for the first time since my early teens, I’m not here for a year or two. Friendships have time to mellow.
5. Age is somewhat irrelevant, yes other kids are nice, but a kindred spirit knows no age.
6. There is no specific measure of a meaningful friendship nor are all facets of a kindred spirit always fulfilled within one person.
7. Until I find my place here, I am thankful for modern modes of friendships such as blogs, emails, skype, and text messaging!
As wife to Dan and mama to my three beautiful daughters, I spend most of my time learning to live well in the day to day. I write about things such as daily life, natural living, books, food and art (especially with young children) over at Confessions of a Young Mama. In my spare moments, I add handmade goodness to my little shop Chickadee Swing.
You can also find Chickadee Swing on Facebook.
Marissa and I are doing a blog swap today, so why don’t you grab another cup of coffee and head over to This Mama to check out my post there.