I am right now getting ready for a getaway with my girlfriends; as in, I getaway to one of my girlfriends house and we look after each other. We listen, we advise, we serve, we appreciate and we share.
There are four of us that get together a few times a year, once or twice for a full weekend (or as much as family responsibilities permit) and another couple of times for lunches. We're pretty spread out and it often takes a bit of planning to make these times together happen, but we make it happen, BECAUSE IT'S IMPORTANT!! We plan the place, the menu, the activities, but always with a relaxed, 'if it works out that way, great' attitude and one of the activities that is scheduled EACH AND EVERY TIME, is the time to sit and share what's been going on for each of us and how it feels; this is a no holds barred kind of weekend, we know it all and we love each other for it all the more!
We've been getting together for about 13 years now, yes, ladies, 13 and, at different points during that time we've sometimes let our get togethers take the backseat and then one of us finds ourselves in crisis and know we need to reconnect. We've found the rhythm that works, we would love to be able to share more time together,but what we've found is the minimum, less than that and we're lost!
We're a good fit, two of us like to make the food, ALL of us like to eat it (it's always different and NOBODY complains), and two of us (not me, so much) like the clean up, well, would rather clean up; that makes for an easy weekend!
Once a month I go out for dinner with The Red Hot Mama's and in the summer we have a pampered weekend away. There is a different feel to this group, it's all about feeling better! As in LAUGHING!!
Basically, I bring the voice of experience to this group, as in, I'm the old one. But the thing that holds us together; that makes us look forward to each month's dinner, is how we can all laugh at ourselves (and those each of us married, as well :o) We all are going through the same kind of stuff, or have already gone through it, so there's no shame in talking about ANYTHING!! And that is always enlightening, if you allow yourself to be open.
Now, something that holds true for both of these groups is that it took a couple of years for me to open up to them, or more accurately, feel part of the group. I enjoyed being with them, but kind of sat around the edge, and you know what?
Life is Short; Jump In!!
Make time to spend with your girlfriends! Husbands, children and for some, parents, will always need your attention, but your girlfriends take you, your stuff, your beautiful self, your ugly self and celebrate life with you! They lift you up and they can bring you back where you belong, too, or they're just there to hold your hand and remind you that you are a good person. Can anyone ask for more?
And that's why you need the time with your friends; to keep your sanity.
When I found my knitting group, eight years ago, it was an easier settling in period. I was in my 'zone' and we were all strangers; we were all getting to know each other.
Knitting can be a solitary hobby or you can choose to share your time, your knowledge or your quest for knowledge. Whatever brought each of us together isn't something that we've really explored but what I do know is that it has provided a lifeline for us!
It may be the need for a clarification of a pattern, to understand a new stitch, it may be to borrow some needles, it may be to get a ride, it might be to get a recipe, it might be to have another pair of hands, or eight, to untangle a wonderfully, fabulous ball of uncooperative yarn.
Or it might be that we came together so that we weren't alone when we heard the words, "they found cancer cells" or "there's a mass on your grandson's kidney" and so that you can celebrate, with tears and laughter, when they say, "you're cured" and "the bleeding has stopped" and "it's favourable".
Don't put it off; dont' stand on the sidelines. All that we know for sure, is that we have NOW! Share this revelation with all who you love, and if they don't get it, that's o.k., you tried.
Just remember to look after yourself and find a girlfriend, or twelve, to laugh and cry with; that's what friends are for.
Have a great week-end everyone...I know I will!