I keep hearing women talk about how it takes a village, or how thankful they are for their “tribe” of friends. I find myself wondering if there is something wrong with me because I don’t have those sort of groups in my life for the most part anymore.
In my 20’s I had a huge group of friends. We spent all of our free time together. If we had a little extra money we were out partying, dancing and having the time of our lives. When we were broke, we hunkered down at my house, playing cards, listening to music and talking until way past midnight. We celebrated our youth, and grew up together nearly becoming family as most military friendships do. I am lucky to still have a few of those friends left in my life.
In my 30’s, the group grew smaller as I was married and had 2 kids, yet we still had a blast having driveway parties with our neighbors after the kids went to bed. We were there for each other in good times and bad. We celebrated 1st half marathons, and grieved when we lost loved ones. We’ve mostly since grown apart, only keeping in touch via Facebook etc. The one close friend I kept from my late 30’s, was also military and we’re still very close.
In my early 40’s, I struggled finding my way after retiring from the military, but found myself a fantastic group of friends in the running community. While the friendships weren’t nearly as tight knit or long term, they served such a wonder stepping stone for me to find myself. We were there for each other to support during races, and even sometimes in regular life. Most of us have since grown apart minus one very dear friend I met through the running community. We were also extremely close with our next door neighbors, and even though we live far apart now we still remain close.
Now as I peak my late 40’s, I used to honestly question why on earth I even cared about fitting in anymore? But I’ll admit, it bothered me for the first couple of years after we moved to Florida. I wasn’t part of the Mom’s groups as my kids are much older, I didn’t fit in with the stay at home Moms as I work full time and trying to make conversation was a struggle, and I couldn’t handle the gossipers or 40 year old something “mean girls” because that’s just not how I roll…
And then it hit me about a year ago. I have never really fit in, in general, and that’s ok. It just means I am now more selective in who I choose to spend time with in life, and that’s ok. Quality beats quantity any day of the week if you ask me. As long as you have a few good friends in your life, you’re ok in my book. And I’m lucky to have a small handful that I talked about in this post. Maybe it just means you finally realize that you deserve the very best, right?! Who needs a village, anyhow?