Wednesday, January 21, 2015

awake, my soul

I believe so strongly in girlfriends.  I truly think it's vital to my health (I'm not even being hyperbolic here) to have women in my life to connect with.  Every Thursday afternoon I have a Skype date with my high school best friend.  On Wednesday nights I go to Pie & Broad City Shpitty night, where my BFF Shpitty and I watch Broad City and eat pie (was that explanation necessary?).  One time I started crying on my way to lunch because I was so grateful to be on my way to see friends.  I've had times in my life that felt so desperately lonely, I just don't feel able to take these connections for granted any more.

In 2009 I tried out and got into my college's improv team.  I was shocked, intimidated, and so, so excited. Carrie was on the team with me and I was in awe that she wasn't just funny, you know, for a girl--she held her ground and proved time and time again to be just as clever as the guys on our team.  I'd seen her in Comic Frenzy shows before and was totally star struck and intimidated when I met her (that seems silly to admit now because Carrie is so down to earth and friendly that she probably wouldn't have blinked if I'd just hugged her that first day and been like "Be my new best friend?").  Carrie introduced me to Liz, a genius poet/actress, and Darcy, who is hilarious and always looks magazine-ready.  The four of us used to hang out at Panache every Friday at 2:00, which prompted the nickname F@2 for our group (is this high school? I don't care, I love it).

Right after I started doing improv, I met Brooke.  She worked in the office next to the store, so she would stop by and we'd talk about clothes and school and our husbands.  Brooke is one of those people that makes you feel at ease right away.  She's outgoing and genuinely interested in the things you're saying.  We got together with our husbands one evening and everyone hit it off, which is the unicorn of friendship in the married world.  The weekend of my first improv show, I casually mentioned to Brooke that I would be performing, and her and Nick actually showed up.  I was so touched and blown away by that.  We became instantly inseparable, they lived next door to us, and we would have dinner together almost every night.  When they moved away to Utah I cried for days.  Now, Brooke is turning her house into a magazine spread, it is so beautiful, and is on her way to becoming the world's greatest speech pathologist.
Brooke was the first of those friends to leave me in Rexburg, but everyone slowly trickled off, too.   Carrie went to Utah, then Denver, then Utah again, and Darcy went to Georgia, and Liz is in Salt Lake becoming a famous actress, but we've all kept in touch.  We have this group text that's almost constantly got some kind of dialogue going, and it's the perfect place to be like "Omg what if I kill my son today? I'm going to lose my mind," and then everyone rushes to text back and be like "You're an amazing mom! You'll be okay! Hang in there!" and it's so, so nice.
If you're still reading at this point, well, my hat is off to you ("and my HAND is off to YOU!" name that show).  I just wanted to illustrate how incredible it was when Darcy alerted us that she was going to be in Utah for the weekend, and Carrie decided to drive a couple hours, and Liz offered her apartment for brunch, and then I talked to Brooke and we arranged a sleepover...how could I not sprint down to to Utah for 24 hours?  I left on Saturday afternoon and came back Sunday evening--8 hours of driving in less than 24 hours.  It wasn't ideal, but I'm telling you, this is how much I believe in the power of women friendships.  I got In N Out twice, went on a Trader Joe's shopping spree, spent over 4 hours lounging around Liz's apartment talking, drove around talking Brooke's ear off, it was just the greatest.

I think it is so important to get out of the house after a long day of talking to a toddler to have a conversation with someone on an equal level, someone you can bounce ideas off of and exchange hair compliments with.  I love talking books and religion and feminism, and then I also love being like "Should I get a boob job?  Are my eyebrows too thick?  Did you see that weird blog post by that one blogger?" It's programmed in us to need to connect with other people, and I really think that there's a certain kind of sadness that forms when that need isn't being met.  I'm so used to feeling left behind living in such a transient town, and this weekend was a wonderful reminder that these women who have spread out across the country aren't gone from my life, they just don't live next door anymore.  We still care deeply about one another and that support system still exists, just in a different way than it once did.  It's also so good for my writing to pick a brain that isn't my own and to hear about how someone else sees the world.  It's just all so beautiful that I came home and organized a Galentine's Day party to celebrate the women in my life. I LOVE GIRLFRIENDS.

10 comments:

  1. Ugh, I'm craving this kind of circle of friends right now. My best friend (who already lives 3 hours away) is transferring to the college of her dreams and while I'm unbelievably excited for her, I'm also so sad that she will now be living 10 hours away. I feel like it's so hard to make lady friends not that I'm not in college anymore!

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  2. Yup. Totally cried when I read this. I LOVE YOU! And you're right- I wouldn't have blinked if you had hugged me that first day. Because you are sincere and funny and so truly, deeply, inherently KIND and anyone within a 100 mile radius of you knows that.

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  3. Love this! You are so lucky to have such a wonderful group of friends!!

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  4. It can be so tough to form new female friendships as an adult. I had the same feeling of loss when I moved away after college and established myself (alone) in a new city. I have developed some new friendships since then - some I wouldn't trade for the world, even - but it's the best feeling ever to get together with your old girls. Just feels like home.

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  5. I love, love, love this because I know how much you love all these friends! I'm so happy (and just a little jealous) you got girlfriend time. You have good friends because you are a good friend.

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  6. GALENTINE'S DAY PARTY! And agreed- it's essential for our health to have good girl friends! I'd choose that over vitamins everyday.

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  7. absolute TRUTH. My two best friends live on the other side of the country, and it is terrible. Thank goodness for group texting!

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I think you're smart, pretty, & entitled to your own opinion.

I'd love it if the feeling was mutual!