Here we are – after the hair, before the makeup.
She was making a funny face, and that’s how I knew: Smitty was at that birthday party. We were friends even in kindergarten – even though neither one of us remembered it!
I do, however, remember Elise being my friend from an early age. We met playing t-ball, which is truly ironic, as neither of us is what you’d call the “athletic type.” In fact, I think it’s safe to say that we’re what Jim Gaffigan would call “indoorsy.”
Also ironic, given the number of years we spent in Camp Fire Girls, learning to roll sleeping bags and make dinner over a fire pit.
As the years have gone by, I’ve stayed close to some friends (Smitty) and lost touch with others (Elise). Funny. I don’t think you can ever predict in the moment who will be your forever friends and who are your friends for a moment in time. It’s just the way it goes, although I kick and scream and protest this passing of time and fading of friendships.
In the past couple of years, most of our “couple friends” have moved away: Katie and John to Virginia, Zac and Mandy to Minnesota, another couple to St. Louis, another couple about an hour away from our town.
Excuse me while I take a moment to consider if I should read something into this trend.
Anyway, as part of my determination to get more involved in church this year, I’ve realized that we probably need to see about making some new friends. After all, being part of a Christian community is having people to do life with, in your town, in your everyday.
Can I be honest, though? I don’t really want to make new friends. Part of me can’t help thinking, “I don’t need more friends. I like my old friends. And I don’t have time for new ones. And…it’s hard!”
Making friends used to be easy, used to come naturally. You know, back when you became friends with whoever was around – in English class, in your dorm room, in the next entry-level cubicle.
But now? Now, it’s much more complicated. You have to factor in things like proximity (Because who has time to develop a friendship with someone who lives all the way out in the next suburb?), religious practices and beliefs (For example, will you drink a beer while watching football? And does poker count as the bad kind of gambling?), parenting style (I don’t care if you have kids yet or not, but do you frown disapprovingly when I let my daughter cry for five minutes – okay, 15 minutes – after I put her to bed?), and honestly, how many friends you already have (Because let’s be frank: I do not have the energy to compete for your attention. The cool kids can have you, if that’s your thing.).
Okay, so I jest. And if I’m getting hung up on things like this (which I may or may not, okay?), then clearly I may have the problem.
But the fact remains: making new friends as an adult is not easy.
That is why I am so glad to have met Josh and Britney. They joined our church and choir this past year, fresh from college and newly married. And freaking hilarious. These sweet kids – yep, I said it – are funny, smart and seemingly unfazed by the fact that I am cuh-razy.
I have talked about not showering (and therefore smelling like roadkill), I have told Josh that his outrageous piano-playin’ makes me want to puke out of jealousy, and I spontaneously (and embarrassingly) burst into tears in the middle of a light-hearted conversation with Britney.
And yet, as far as I can tell, Josh and Britney are our new friends. They even came for Easter lunch. With my family.
Yep, we skipped the get-to-know-you game night and went straight to family dinner.
New friends work for me. For more Works for Me Wednesday, visit We Are THAT Family.
Have you made any new friends lately? Do you think it’s harder now than it used to be?