Wednesday, April 30, 2008

everyone needs friends ...

I have never been good at making friends. It's usually because I really couldn't care less. For the most part, I just don't want to make the effort. I've always figured that if someone wanted to be my friend, they'd call. If the phone never rang, oh well.

This is not to say that I don't have friends. I do, some of the best friends one could ask for.

Let's start with, K. She is my oldest and dearest friend. We were born in the same hospital, 17 days apart. We met when we were three and by sheer luck, two years later, ended up in the same kindergarten class. That was it right there. Fate had intervened and we've been best friends for 23 years. She has been there for me through thick and thin. K basically lived at my house at times. She was my maid-of-honor, and I her's. In fact, she is so tight with my family that most of my aunts and uncles were also at her wedding. As we have aged, we have grown apart, but in a way that is fine with both of us. We are still best friends and always will be. But we don't talk all the time and only see each other once or twice a year, but when we do, it's like how it's always been and I have never doubted her love and friendship, even for a second.

In high school, I met C. She was actually my little sister's friend. We hit it off instantly and over the next few months, we became beyond tight. We survived the "periwinkle blowout" and recovered with a better understanding of each other. She too lived at my house at times (apparently my parents didn't mind house guests) and when I went to college, she followed me to Philadelphia the following fall, staying at my dorm for days on end (odd, especially since we went to different schools). But like with K, our relationship has morphed. We are both married with children, and rarely see each other, yet I know if I needed her she'd be there. And I'd do the same for her.

Next came college, and while I lived with a group of my friends and teammates (whom I love), H and I have always been the closest. We are alike in more ways than I can measure, she even resembles me (it's a little strange). Of all my friends (outside of my sisters), she is the one that I stay in closest contact with. I'm not really sure why either. She is separated by as much distance as the rest of my friends, but for some reason life hasn't gotten in the way of our friendship. And although she is the older one, I often act as her sounding board and I quite enjoy being that for her.

Then there are my sisters (that includes you too, Sianna Lee). They are truly my best friends and I am thankful for them everyday.

Of my six best friends (yes, they are all BEST friends), I was almost destined to have friendships with all of them. I didn't have to have an icebreaker or really even try to befriend them, they were in places I couldn't avoid them. K, C, and H either went to school with me, lived with me or both. And my sisters - they are family. I had no choice.

But things have changed since college, when you lose the common denominator (school, clubs, roomies) that bring people together when you are younger and it becomes harder to make (and keep) friends (at least for me). That was until I had children. Because once you have kids, you always have an icebreaker (especially with other moms).

This is how I have met most of my current friends. L was my first "mommy friend." We met in Erie, while both of us were pushing our daughters in their strollers through the neighborhood. Dizzle sneezed. L said, "Bless you." and that started our friendship. We were together nearly everyday for the next three months, until our family moved to Virginia. We still talk and keep up with each other's lives, and I believe that we always will. She was exactly the friend I needed as a new mom - someone who really understood what I was going through.

When we moved, I was left once again with no friends (at least in a 200 mile radius), but almost immediately joined Stroller Strides and since have gained a group of friends (and training partners) for whom I am truly grateful. They are amazing women and it pains me to think that at some point we will move again and I will have to leave them (especially since I will be left with no friends yet again!!)

But regardless of what happens (or where we live), I'd like to believe that I will always be able to count on my friends, whether we've known each other for three months or 23 years. Because while I still suck at meeting new people and making any effort at all, the women in my life give me strength, inspiration and companionship. And I need them more than they will ever know.


Anonymous said...

I love u

Anonymous said...

We're lucky to have you Tonia!! Love you girl! -C