Friends vs. Family
These days? Well, from my end of the telephone it certainly seems her life is very much the same, but with all the growing up you'd expect such as better job and relationships. She jets off frequently to spend time with various groups of close girlfriends (she was just in Boston this last weekend), goes over to friends' houses to make dinner and drink wine, and has coffee dates. Her boyfriend comes and stays with her a few days out of every week and they go out to dinner or spend time with friends.
She puts, what appears to me as, vast amounts of energy into her friends. She is a wonderful, giving, loving friend to all her friends all the time. No exceptions.
I barely see my best friend once a month... and she lives about a mile away.
I've set a goal to hand-write one letter a month to someone I care about. I set that two months ago and I did write my sister a note, but that's almost cheating because I talk to her weekly. She may actually be the person, besides Anthony and my mom, who I talk to the most regularly. The point of setting the goal was to keep in touch with those friends with whom I've lost touch.
I peruse my friends' MySpaces and Facebook profiles and they're all so connected to their friends. Even those friends with babies and kids. There is photo after photo of big friend gatherings and couple outtings. Anthony and I don't have any "couple-friends," nor do we run with a big crowd anymore.
I feel like we've moved into a weird twilight zone of adulthood. It's like we're all alone with millions of other parents with small children who can't hang with a disturbance in their routines, either. Hollis is easy, as I've said a hundred times already, but that's only if he gets his sleep. We can't drag him to dinner somewhere any time after 7 o'clock or he'll have a meltdown because he's so painfully tired. And who, besides senior citizens and parents of young children eat dinner before 7??
We've had to turn down countless invitations to do things in the past few months. I feel like a horrible friend, almost selfish because if I can't do it on "my" terms, then I can't go. It sucks and I don't mean to be such a pain in the ass or so damn unavailable, but there it is. I can't do a damn thing about it.
I think, too, that my feelings of isolation and guilt are exacerbated because I don't have any other friends with kids. Well, that's not true, my friend, Les, has twin girls 8 months older than Hollis, but she lives an hour away. And my other friends with babies live in California. The friends I have been able to see over the past year are, quite frankly, the sweetest people I've ever met. They never mind that I have weird socializing hours or always tell them, "Sorry, I can't make it because Hollis (fill in the blank)."
In any case, I'm sorry, everyone for being so invisible for the past year! I don't see it changing any time soon, either. - Yet another reason why people who get married and have kids, or just have kids together sans union, with a shitty base of a relationship so often split up at this time in their lives. This is not easy! Wondrous, soulful, fulfilling, ephemeral? Yes. Easy? No.
Now's the time to circle my wagons, so to speak, and focus on my marriage and my young son. This is when I feed my family (and that includes me) with love, commitment, and sensitivity so as to set up a successful pattern for years to come. I'm putting so much love and energy into my family (MY family) that I'm left with virtually nothing left give.
But I still miss my friends... a lot.