So God Made a Mother Collection ➔

My husband and I recently went to a barbeque at a friend’s house about an hour away. In recent years this barbeque has become an annual ritual among our college friends; it’s been thirty-two years since we graduated and I’ve now known these people for two-thirds of my life. Our middle son joined us since he knows most of our old friends and their offspring and enjoys their company. We began explaining to all the kids how we met and who lived with whom over the years we were in school. It was a beautiful, relaxing day, filled with wine and too much food. Afterwards, we all agreed that despite the fact that we have all made wonderful friends in the various states and communities in which we live, there’s something about this group that is special. Having been roommates, dorm mates and apartment mates and knowing each other for so long, we are incredibly comfortable in each other’s company; it’s sort of like putting on your favorite pair of sweatpants and broken in slippers. You know what I mean. 

Despite not living near one another during the years right after college, we were still able to get together on a fairly regular basis back then. And even when we first started having our babies, we managed to tote them along when we wanted to see each other. But then… life happened. Our children started getting invited to birthday parties and playing soccer and participating in a million other activities, or so it seemed.

For the next few decades it was hard to find time for one another. Between raising our children and building careers, there wasn’t a spare moment. We generally made it to big events like baby namings and brises, bar and bat mitzvahs, funerals, etc., but we didn’t have time to just hang out. And on the rare occasions we did all get together, we were too busy chasing our children around when they were with us or worrying about getting home for the babysitter when they weren’t. But now we have reached the other side. Our get-togethers have become more frequent, last longer and, honestly, are more enjoyable. When our children join us we don’t worry that a toddler will fall in the pool, fall down a flight of stairs or burn themselves on the barbeque. There’s no fighting among our offspring, despite age and gender differences. They have come to view each other as a sort of extended family. And when we get together without our children, we no longer have to rush home. The distance between our homes seems less of an obstacle these days.

It doesn’t have to be college friends who are your crew. People meet their tribe at different points in their lives; their neighborhood growing up, high school, camp, etc. This is the group who:

  1. Knew you when. Your old friends know your quirks and accept you for who you are. You can’t get away with anything with them because they know the real you and, best of all, love you anyway.
  2. Will mentor your children. A huge benefit to our group of friends which I had never anticipated is the guidance we give to each other’s kids. We offer advice and even assist with their careers. When my oldest son was having some concerns about work recently, one of my friends got on the phone and gave him invaluable advice, which he actually heeded. It really does take a village and our kids seem to enjoy this village almost as much as we do.
  3. Will be there for you. They show up or call like magic, when you need it most.
  4. Makes you feel young again because you still remember the part of you who existed when you all met.

So for those of you with young families and burgeoning careers who may be missing your old friends or feel as if they are slipping away, don’t worry. Even though you may not be seeing as much of each other as you would like right now, if you keep the embers of your relationships alive, you will be able to enjoy each other’s company again. That’s not to say you can take those friendships for granted. Do your best to keep in touch, but when you can’t, know that your true friends are out there, ready to reconnect when life allows. 

There’s a “ditty” my boys sang in pre-school before heading off to kindergarten: “Make new friends but keep the old. One is silver and the other gold.” As I get older, I realize the truth to that statement and I’m grateful for all the friends in my life, the people who sustain me and add joy to my life.

Marlene Fischer

Marlene Kern Fischer is a wife, mother of three sons, food shopper extraordinaire, blogger and college essay editor. She attended Brandeis University, from which she graduated cum laude with a degree in English Literature. In addition to Her View From Home, her work has been featured on CollegateParent, Grown and Flown, Kveller, The Erma Bombeck Writers’ Workshop, Beyond Your Blog, The SITS Girls, and MockMom. You can read more of Marlene’s work on her site here: https://marlenekfwordpresscom.wordpress.com/

I Thought Our Friendship Would Be Unbreakable

In: Friendship, Journal, Relationships
Two friends selfie

The message notification pinged on my phone. A woman, once one of my best friends, was reaching out to me via Facebook. Her message simply read, “Wanted to catch up and see how life was treating you!”  I had very conflicting feelings. It seemed with that one single message, a flood of memories surfaced. Some held some great moments and laughter. Other memories held disappointment and hurt of a friendship that simply had run its course. Out of morbid curiosity, I clicked on her profile page to see how the years had been treating her. She was divorced and still...

Keep Reading

The First 10 Years: How Two Broken People Kept Their Marriage from Breaking

In: Journal, Marriage, Relationships
The First Ten Years: How Two Broken People Kept Their Marriage from Breaking www.herviewfromhome.com

We met online in October of 2005, by way of a spam email ad I was THIS CLOSE to marking as trash. Meet Single Christians! My cheese alert siren sounded loudly, but for some reason, I unchecked the delete box and clicked through to the site. We met face-to-face that Thanksgiving. As I awaited your arrival in my mother’s kitchen, my dad whispered to my little brother, “Hide your valuables. Stacy has some guy she met online coming for Thanksgiving dinner.” We embraced for the first time in my parents’ driveway. I was wearing my black cashmere sweater with the...

Keep Reading

To The Mother Who Is Overwhelmed

In: Inspiration, Motherhood
Tired woman with coffee sitting at table

I have this one head. It is a normal sized head. It didn’t get bigger because I had children. Just like I didn’t grow an extra arm with the birth of each child. I mean, while that would be nice, it’s just not the case. We keep our one self. And the children we add on each add on to our weight in this life. And the head didn’t grow more heads because we become a wife to someone. Or a boss to someone. We carry the weight of motherhood. The decisions we must make each day—fight the shorts battle...

Keep Reading

You’re a Little Less Baby Today Than Yesterday

In: Journal, Motherhood
Toddler sleeping in mother's arms

Tiny sparkles are nestled in the wispy hair falling across her brow, shaken free of the princess costume she pulled over her head this morning. She’s swathed in pink: a satiny pink dress-up bodice, a fluffy, pink, slightly-less-glittery-than-it-was-two-hours-ago tulle skirt, a worn, soft pink baby blanket. She’s slowed long enough to crawl into my lap, blinking heavy eyelids. She’s a little less baby today than she was only yesterday.  Soon, she’ll be too big, too busy for my arms.  But today, I’m rocking a princess. The early years will be filled with exploration and adventure. She’ll climb atop counters and...

Keep Reading

Dear Husband, I Loved You First

In: Marriage, Motherhood, Relationships
Man and woman kissing in love

Dear husband, I loved you first. But often, you get the last of me. I remember you picking me up for our first date. I spent a whole hour getting ready for you. Making sure every hair was in place and my make-up was perfect. When you see me now at the end of the day, the make-up that is left on my face is smeared. My hair is more than likely in a ponytail or some rat’s nest on the top of my head. And my outfit, 100% has someone’s bodily fluids smeared somewhere. But there were days when...

Keep Reading

Stop Being a Butthole Wife

In: Grief, Journal, Marriage, Relationships
Man and woman sit on the end of a dock with arms around each other

Stop being a butthole wife. No, I’m serious. End it.  Let’s start with the laundry angst. I get it, the guy can’t find the hamper. It’s maddening. It’s insanity. Why, why, must he leave piles of clothes scattered, the same way that the toddler does, right? I mean, grow up and help out around here, man. There is no laundry fairy. What if that pile of laundry is a gift in disguise from a God you can’t (yet) see? Don’t roll your eyes, hear me out on this one. I was a butthole wife. Until my husband died. The day...

Keep Reading

I Can’t Be Everyone’s Chick-fil-A Sauce

In: Friendship, Journal, Living, Relationships
woman smiling in the sun

A couple of friends and I went and grabbed lunch at Chick-fil-A a couple of weeks ago. It was delightful. We spent roughly $20 apiece, and our kids ran in and out of the play area barefoot and stinky and begged us for ice cream, to which we responded, “Not until you finish your nuggets,” to which they responded with a whine, and then ran off again like a bolt of crazy energy. One friend had to climb into the play tubes a few times to save her 22-month-old, but it was still worth every penny. Every. Single. One. Even...

Keep Reading

Love Notes From My Mother in Heaven

In: Faith, Grief, Journal, Living
Woman smelling bunch of flowers

Twelve years have passed since my mother exclaimed, “I’ve died and gone to Heaven!” as she leaned back in her big donut-shaped tube and splashed her toes, enjoying the serenity of the river.  Twelve years since I stood on the shore of that same river, 45 minutes later, watching to see if the hopeful EMT would be able to revive my mother as she floated toward his outstretched hands. Twelve years ago, I stood alone in my bedroom, weak and trembling, as I opened my mother’s Bible and all the little keepsakes she’d stowed inside tumbled to the floor.  It...

Keep Reading

Sometimes Friendships End, No Matter How Hard You Try

In: Friendship, Journal, Relationships
Sad woman alone without a friend

I tried. We say these words for two reasons. One: for our own justification that we made an effort to complete a task; and two: to admit that we fell short of that task. I wrote those words in an e-mail tonight to a friend I had for nearly 25 years after not speaking to her for eight months. It was the third e-mail I’ve sent over the past few weeks to try to reconcile with a woman who was more of a sister to me at some points than my own biological sister was. It’s sad when we drift...

Keep Reading

Goodbye to the House That Built Me

In: Grown Children, Journal, Living, Relationships
Ranch style home as seen from the curb

In the winter of 1985, while I was halfway done growing in my mom’s belly, my parents moved into a little brown 3 bedroom/1.5 bath that was halfway between the school and the prison in which my dad worked as a corrections officer. I would be the first baby they brought home to their new house, joining my older sister. I’d take my first steps across the brown shag carpet that the previous owner had installed. The back bedroom was mine, and mom plastered Smurf-themed wallpaper on the accent wall to try to get me to sleep in there every...

Keep Reading

5 Secrets to the

BEST Summer Ever!

FREE EMAIL BONUS

Creating simple summer memories

with your kids that will  last a lifetime