One of the hardest things about being a mom is finding time for yourself. I teach all of my clients that this is a very important part of our world and a happy mom is a better mom! Nevertheless, when you think of ‘time for yourself’, there are several categories to from which to choose. There is quiet time with no interruptions, there is time to go workout, there is time spent with your significant other & there is time spent with your girlfriends! This last one has recently jumped to the front of my line!!
As easy and convenient as it is to communicate on Facebook and Twitter, it leads us down a dark and scary road. This road is paved with friends from our past, our present and our future. It allows us to know everything that is going on with our their families, picture of their kids, their weekend plans, etc… The thing it doesn’t allow us to do is sit down face to face and laugh with each other over coffee or a glass of wine. Don’t get me wrong, social media outlets have helped many moms all over the world not feel isolated. We can feel comfort in knowing that we are not the only parent with a kid that throws tantrums, won’t eat, fights bedtime, etc…
We feel connected…but are we?
It is enough to be ‘cyber-connected’?
There are many moms that have a great situation with an amazing friend that lives just doors down with kids the same age. The kids play well together, the couple is fun to have over for a glass of wine on the porch and all is merry! For the rest of us, that world exists only in the movies. Many of us work and our kids go to daycare or preschool. The other kids don’t live near us and the parents run in and out so fast we don’t even say hello, nor do we even know their names! The joke in our house is – do we have time for more friends? The answer is YES!
As our life changes, so does the time we have to spend with the people we call friends. Our life is short and we should embrace new interactions with people. Rarely do I quote stories from church, but last weekend my priest told a story that made me think…There was man who was flying to Europe. He boarded the plane, sat in his seat, took a sleeping pill, put on his headphones and never interacted with anyone around him. As they were preparing to exit the plane, the flight attendant came up to the older woman sitting next to him and said, “Mother Theresa, it was a pleasure to have you on our flight today! I hope you have a wonderful visit with your friends!” He missed an amazing opportunity! He missed out on a life changing interaction because he shut down too soon. (Now the rest of that story/joke is that the man now talks to everyone he sits with, rides next to, shares an elevator with, etc…HAHAHAHAHAHA We all know that person)
The importance of deep & meaningful friendships is enormous! We cannot survive without human interactions. We can’t live on _(facebook/twitter/texting)_ alone! Many of us are lucky to have a few friendships that have deep roots, and I cherish those relationships; but a lot of us find ourselves in a situation where our friendships seem to be ‘a mile wide and an inch deep’. We chat comfortably, we interact occasionally, but we never get to the ‘good’ stuff. We never get deep. These friendships are great, but they don’t refuel our tanks. THAT is what we need!
I recently found myself feeling a bit lonely. The irony is that I work with great women/men all over the country and talk daily for hours about life and health and wellness. Why was I feeling like this? I realized that my loneliness was not because I was separated from the people I love, it was that I was disconnected from them. Life took over and I was not chatting with my girlfriends about stupid stuff and hearing funny stories. I was expecting my husband to be my husband and my girlfriend. Men can’t do that, ’cause they are men. They listen differently, they are motivated differently, they are problem solvers. I needed my GIRLFRIENDS! We nurture lots of things in our world – relationships need to be one of them! Take a Date Night with your significant other, go out on a Girl’s Night, Call up your friend or your Grandma on the phone…nurture these relationships and allow the roots to grow deeper!
Texting taught us an abbreviated language, Twitter taught us to make our thoughts short and sweet & Facebook allowed us to be updated on current events…but sometimes, yes sometimes…we need to spell out the entire thought, we need to hear the long-winded version and it is funnier when you hear it from the lips of your friend!
* MUSM AAYF = ‘Missing You So Much, As Always Your Friend’ (Textuage)