I am truly blessed to have great friends - and as the saying goes "you have friends for a reason, a season or a lifetime." I truly believe those words and it is important to "recognize and categorize" what type of friendships you have as you go through life...it can help you understand a lot about relationships...especially female ones. "Reason" friends may be the neighbor who lives next door or the mom who co-grade-mothered kindergarten class with you. "Season" friends may be your college friends or the friends you made as your child was going through school. "Lifetime" is obvious....these are your long-time friends through thick and thin. Note: Reasons and Seasons CAN become Lifetimes! However, Reasons and Seasons can come and go and it is important to understand it.
My childhood girlfriends and I go on at least one trip together each year. I have known most of these women since middle school. These are my "lifetime" friends. Each one is a treasure and offers their own personality to the group. For me, lifetime friends are the ones who have known you before you acquired all of your titles...mom, wife, co-worker, etc. These women know DANA. They can call me out on things and understand where I am coming from in an instant. These are also the friends I can pick off where I left off with immediately upon seeing them (some live in my town but we don't get together as often as people would think and some live farther away so mileage prohibits frequent visits).
I write about this topic because I think it is important to figure out "what juices you." For me, seeing these "lifer" friends who understand and know me makes me feel understood and validated. I can talk about my problems and trust they will give their honest opinions and know they care about me. We just have fun together too and can give each other a word or a look that can transport us back to 1983 in a second.
I do have great friends outside of this group and I have made it my mission to reach out to other neat women I have known and enjoyed being around this past year. It was the best resolution I made in 2011. I have re-connected with a college friend for lunch and a woman I knew from my work life who has kids similar in age to mine and has "freedom." I have had lunch and dinner with my son's former babysitter who is back in town earning another college degree. I have invited ladies in my neighborhood to a holiday wine and cheese with my other great "neighborhood" girlfriends. I walk with a great girlfriend almost daily and I am going to my first book club meeting this week!
Now that I am "at home," I find that having plans on the horizon keep me moving forward and give me something to look ahead to. Surrounding people who feed your soul is so important. Being happy with yourself is too....more on that to come!