I saw some photos pop up in my news feed which reminded me I needed to message my friend again. I had been trying to get together with her since February. I saw the last date of my message was May 1st saying I wanted to catch up. There were several messages before that as well. Me asking her if she had time to get together for her birthday, and other things. The last date night had been in December or January and we had a really good time. We went to a local restaurant and stayed longer than we planned. We laughed until tears came out of the corner of our eyes. Every time we get together as couples, we have an amazing time. I even mentioned it would be great to do a couples weekend trip.
Let me back up a few years though…eleven and a half to be precise. When I had my two girls 18 months apart I thought my social life was pretty much over because I was not sure how to manage a toddler and breastfeeding a new baby. I thought I would probably be stuck in the house until I weaned my baby. After 6 months of that, I could no longer take that my favorite thing in the world was a trip to Target, because it meant seeing people. I didn’t care if I had to figure out how to get the horrendous double stroller out and the little carrier to fit in there by myself. I had recovered from the c-section by that point even though I still had pain where I had been cut (another story). I had this brilliant idea to set up a playgroup and advertise it for free in our neighborhood letter.
MOMS poured in. I got about 25 e-mails or so at first. I couldn’t believe it. I had the first meeting at our “clubhouse” and that’s when I met ladies who would be life savers for me at that point in my life. After a few weeks of this clubhouse madness, a few dropped off. That was great. We were left with a core group at this point and then there were about 9 of us. I decided to do a rotation of houses schedule. Every single Tuesday at 10 a.m. we met at someone’s house. We got close. We laughed. We cried. We survived. We were the most eclectic group ever and the stories I could tell…well, I loved every single minute of it. When we started falling apart for one reason or another, I was extremely sad. Some moved due to the military. One left her husband and then didn’t talk to us. A few of us remained.
When my closest two friends from the group moved away, I was sad. Very sad, but I knew it was going to happen. This was before the “rise” of Facebook, so I know I sound old, but we had e-mail. I was happy to have that. Years later one of those friends magically moved back to the same area. I was ecstatic! We could get together again like old days. Time melted away when I saw them. Then yesterday, I got a message (I took out names):
Hi, I am working my way through letting everyone know (that doesn’t know already) we are leaving tomorrow. We have Sold our house, fingers crossed it all goes through. It all happened much quicker than we thought. Husband is working more and more in Europe so it made sense to move back. I think it is now or never with the girls…. I am really sorry I didn’t get to catch up with you before we left but we just had so many things to do. The dog left today she was sent on the plane this morning. I have your details and when I get my new email address I will send it too you. So if you ever make that trip over then maybe you could pop over and see us.
So if for some reason you are reading this friend, the reason the only word I typed back was “wow” is because this hurts. I got a Facebook message. A message. I want that to really sink in. I got a Facebook message telling me you sold your house and the only reason you sent it is because I sent you a message asking for another date night soon. I feel like an awesome friend right about now. So girlfriends reading this, if you have a friend who values your time together, please make time for them. I know that your children’s lives are busy. I know that there is soccer, swimming, field hockey, ballet, gymnastics, cheering and whatever else you have your kids in. But if you have become so busy with “life” that you no longer have time for friends, one day you will regret it.
So when I go to my kitchen window, I will look at the little pot you gave me when you left the first time and think of our time together with a smile…