I am a flighty friend. I never really intended for this to be my title in the grand scheme of adult friendships. It’s just become a part of reality. Before children, I was the ride or die friend who would show up at your doorstep ready to party, pray, or completely clean out your closet (different people, different coping mechanisms). I used to be the 100 percent committed friend. The one you called in the midst of the chaos for help.
However, it dawned on me within the last year, I no longer am that person. I can no longer drop everything and run to the needs of my friends in the same way. In fact, I don’t know that I really know how to be a good friend. It actually hit me just the other day, that no one ever taught me the right way to make and keep friends as a child, much less as a grown woman with a career, side passions, and while raising two small humans. I guess that is why I have very few close friends now.
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Who knew I would be sitting here, mid-thirties, trying to figure out how to make friends? Heck, I am still trying to figure out if I even want to make new friends.
In my defense, I have been with my husband since I graduated from high school. We got married shortly after graduation and had children by our mid-twenties. My 20s were a whirlwind of learning to be a wife, navigating marriage, and then motherhood.
I had very little time to commit to friendships in my 20s, but when I did, I was all in. Now, my all in looks a little different.
I am all in, but only if it is after working hours and I have a babysitter. I am all in as long as it is after bedtime but only for a few hours because this mama has to sleep. Sometimes I am all in, but only if it is through FaceTime because I have a sleeping child in my arms.
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So I completely admit to being the flighty friend. The one who will not RSVP to your child’s birthday party because I have no idea how overstimulated my child will be or how my anxiety meter will be moving that day. In my heart, I really do love you.
I can truthfully say that outside family, I have three real friendships.
They love me despite my flightiness. They understand my lack of presence isn’t intentional; instead, it is survival.
These are the friends who would drop everything and show up at the ER when my child needs stitches. They are ones who will take my children in the drop of a second if I need to call them. These friends are the ones who may live across the country but mail me books, pray for me, and talk to me daily through video chat. They are ones who were at my mother’s house the day she died before I even had the chance to call. They will come over and bring me food and hold my sickly child.
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My friends are ones who love my children and do not judge them for their differences. They are the ones who get that my anxiety sometimes makes me crash at 8 p.m. They understand that the past year of my life has been nothing short of hell at times.
While I am flighty and I don’t commit to things as I used to, I am learning.
I am working on becoming my best self. I’m trying to be better for those around me. I am also forever grateful and indebted to my friends who will always extend grace and love me anyway.
So, if you are a mom in your mid-thirties looking for a semi-committed, flighty friend who will pray for you every day but only see you once every three months on a girls’ night out, I am your girl. Let’s be friends.
Originally published on the author’s blog