This post is going to be some real talk. If you just want the recipe for these Triple Chocolate Brownie Cookies, feel free to grab it from the Dixie Crystals website and I’ll see you next time. I promise, it will not hurt my feelings. But if you are feeling a little “less than” these days, stick around. I have something that I need to get off my chest.
I spent the last weekend at a retreat with 10 beautiful, talented, funny, creative, thoughtful, amazing women. We laughed, cried, hugged, ate, and laughed some more. We talked about everything. Our bodies, kids, spouses, food, sex, money, work, life’s challenges – pretty much everything was on the table. It made me realize how having deep and meaningful friendships with women is something that is seriously missing from my life. There is a place in my heart that really needs the connection that I had this weekend. I miss having girlfriends. I have been pretty open and honest about the struggles I have with my weight, and I think that this is the missing piece to really being free of my emotional eating issues.
I have girlfriends, and amazing ones at that. Friends that have seen me through thick and thin. Gotten me out of bed when I felt like I couldn’t do it. And celebrated alongside me. Sister friends. So what’s the problem you ask? They don’t live close to me. I need someone to come over when I am about to lose my mind on snow day #5. Or to sit on the couch with and have a Sons of Anarchy marathon. Someone that can pick up my kids from school when I have a doctors appointment. A support system. You know, like Meredith and Cristina, a “person”.
Moving as much as we do, it is getting really hard to make new friends. We come with expiration dates (we know when we are moving when we get someplace), and if we move to a community where the people are rooted and without a lot of military, they sort of figure – “Why bother making friends with her? She is just going to leave in 2 years, what’s the point?” I get it, I really do. But those girls, the ones like me, we need friends too.
So, here is the question that I pose to you… how does an almost 38-year-old woman go about making some new friends? Here is what I am thinking:
1. Put yourself out there. My husband once gave me some sage advice. “Bree, people are not going to knock on the door and ask you to be their friend. You need to leave the house and make an effort.” That was his nice way of saying, get your ass off the couch and put on something other than yoga pants and join the living. Point taken. (See sister friend from above. The best friend a girl could ever ask for.)
2. Get involved. Join some clubs. Take come classes. Hang out at the dog park. Chat up the mom next to you at the dentist’s office. Chances are you will already have something in common and have something to talk about. Feel her out, maybe she wants to grab a coffee. Don’t float it out there either. None of the “Hey, want to grab coffee sometime?” No way, it will never happen. Instead try, “Would you like to grab coffee next Wednesday?”
3. It only takes one or maybe two. So let’s say you are at a playgroup and there are 8 moms there. You might not click with all of them, but there might be one that you really like and have a lot in common with. One friend is a great place to start. And if she is awesome like you are, then she might have some other awesome friends and before you know it, you have a NETWORK of awesome friends. I can vouch for this. It has happened to me a few times. Awesome people beget awesome people.
4. If you see a girl in a room that looks like you – kind of shy, feeling out of place, looking a little uncomfortable, searching for the closest exit, go over and say hello. Introduce yourself and make her feel welcome. Ask her to join your group. Be kind, let her know that she belongs there. Even if she is not going to be your new bestie, remember what it feels like to be her. This is good friend making karma.
4. When in doubt, bring baked goods with you wherever you go. If someone doesn’t want to your friend when you are offering them cookies, brownies, or cupcakes, well, they weren’t going to be your friend anyhow.
How do you go about making new friends? Any tips to share?