I'll be the first to admit that I am extremely thankful for the man in my life, and I honestly can't imagine Spahnville without him. (But without him, this little abode might be called Bomgaarsville and that just doesn't have the same ring to it, does it?) I love sharing hopes and dreams with him, I love discussing the tidbits of daily life with him, I love whining to him about work or the kids or life in general. And while I consider the two of us to be great friends and I think we make a fantastic team, having a man just cannot fill the place in my heart that is sacredly reserved for girlfriends.
Over 30 years of my life has been spent next to a girlfriend who really does seem to be my other half. This comes as no surprise to anyone who knows us-- I think it would be impossible to hide the fact that she and I are as soulfully connected as two people can be. And while she lives across the country, she's always close in my heart. My relationship with Kelly has really taught me how important it is to hang on to girlfriends. This seems hard to do with my generation and I'm not sure why. Maybe it's because we're kind of obsessed with our kids or maybe it's because we are kind of obsessed with each other's kids. Or maybe it's because we're kind of obsessed with the internet and what everyone else is doing with their kids and how that affects us with our kids. Whatever the reason, I think it's hard to find good girlfriends these days. Lucky for me, I've got quite a few.
Earlier this summer, one of my friends seemed a little down. A quick plan with a mutual friend and we whipped up a little girls-only fun day; Kid free and sun-filled.
Here's how we gave her the news:
When we got there:
We chatted and took a long walk and drank wine. We sat on the deck and looked at the lake. We talked about our kids and husbands and jobs. We kayaked and paddleboarded dipped our toes in the water.
We used a selfie stick!
Spending time with these ladies helped me connect with myself again. Raising little kids is a lot of work and taking small breaks to rejuvenate with other women is so important.
And the Universe must have known I would need a little rejuvenating during that week because the following night I was lucky enough to have another ladies-only retreat. This time, I met with ladies from my church for a mini camping trip.
We ate a delicious meal, drank good red wine, and roasted S'mores like little kids. When night fell, four of the ladies drove home but I stayed and camped. The weather was perfect for Midwest camping; cool and crisp with a little breeze to keep those pesky skiters away. My friend, Juanita, and I talked into the night about so many things. When I could no longer keep my eyes open, we said our good nights and snuggled into the comfy camper.
That night, I listened to crickets and other critters scurry around outside the little camper. I reflected on my previous two days and how much beauty I'm surrounded by with these women in my life. They all bring something unique into my life. They each are knowledgable about different things. They all have walked different walks in life. They all have unique challenges or stressors that are happening right now. But each one of them is kind and caring and thoughtful. They all are accepting and encouraging to those around them. They are not judgmental or rude or caddy. I think about these things and how fortunate I am to have attracted these women into my life. Every time I'm around them, I feel refreshed and hopeful and alive and I can't even begin to explain how thankful I am for these friendships.