Adult Friendships: They're Hard

7 years ago

One day, I will buy the entire set of I Love Lucy episodes.

I do not have a lot of friends.

That may or may not be a surprise to you. 

I've never been one of the "popular" people. Never been part of the "in" crowd, the group of people that decides the fate of the others, the people who sway the crowd. I'm kind of an outsider.

But that's not to say that I haven't tried.

For years, I tried my hardest to fit in with specific groups. I joined the Catholic Homeschool group, even though I didn't homeschool, simply because they seemed to be a group of nice, conservative women -- who turned out to be extra Judgey McJudgerson and, well, it ended badly.

I don't seem to fit in with many of the moms at school, simply because a) I have more kids than almost all b) I have kids in high school and so most of the little kid stuff goes under my radar c) and I just plain old don't fit the mold. I don't fit in, really, at the martial arts school because a) hello, I am no longer 23 and b) it's tough to be the parent in the parent role and then switch to the student role. It's been tough to make friends when I was overwhelmed with two babies back to back and then Riley's diagnosis tossed me into oblivion for a good long while. I'm not a "hang out at the coffee shop" kind of gal, I'm too broke to shop recreationally (although, hello, we could shop the grocery together! Gee, what a draw I am!), and my kids are going in all different directions all at the same time, which means that I'm often absent from games/practices. I arrive to drop off and pick up. I'm often quiet until I get to know you, which can be misconstrued as standoffish. And I've heard from more than one person that the fact that I have a tattoo on my neck can be off putting. (Yo. Gangsta me!)

Hello. This is about me. Not about you. I'm not taking ANYONE to task, except myself. 

I have a tendency to be loud. I talk over people in my quest to show empathy and understanding. I overshare. I overcall. I overEVERYTHING. Plus, having a blog, people often shy away from me because they don't want to end up in the blog. Totally understandable.

But I can be a good friend. I think. I'm pretty lonely, so I'm going to try.

So this past month, I've really made an effort to stick myself out there -- hello, anxiety and ouch, my stomach ache! -- and make a couple of new friends. A couple of the best friends a girl could have I've met through this blog (darnit! a couple of you don't have blogs!) -- but having a local friend makes all the difference in the world. Someone to chat with while punching the bag or talk to at dismissal time. Someone to invite over to swim this summer, chat on the phone with, have over for drinks.

I am considerate, I think. I am kind. I am funny -- and fun to be with, I think.

Gah. My stomach hurts just posting this. AGAIN, all about me, and so not taking ANYONE to task.

Do you have a lot of friends? Do you have just one or two that are really close to you? How do you handle the friendship dance?



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