This one is written with my female readers in mind. Not that men don’t need/value friendship as much as women, but I’m writing from a place of personal experience, and that experience comes from a female background.
The world needs more girlfriends. I was in my car this morning, running around amongst school drop-offs and library pickups and patient appointments, and this statement rang out in my brain like a bell. The world needs more girlfriends. More specifically, we all need more girlfriends. More connection. More support. More friendship. In fact, I had a different blog post all polished up and ready to go today; but this statement came so quickly and so clearly, that I felt it needed some attention. The world needs more girlfriends.
I’ve always been lucky enough to have a large circle of friends. I moved from small-town Alberta to bigger small-town Alberta when I was ten years old, and one of my most vivid memories of early childhood is the ‘going-away’ party that was held for me when we moved- it included sitting around in a circle of my closest girlfriends, crying, listening to ‘Every Rose Has its Thorn.’ Quite the visual, right? And it’s no secret that my Junior High and High School experience centred around my friend Sarah, who’s still my foundation, 25 years later. My University days brought me my other sounding board, Shannon, and our friendship has spanned the distance of miles and time changes. And CMCC, the four-year all-in-or-all-out program that uprooted my life and moved me across the country, gave me friendships that I lean on daily.
So when I moved to Burlington in 2004, and then finished school in 2006, it was the first time in my life when I found myself not surrounded by girlfriends who knew me; the real, authentic me. I was starting my practice, living in a city that didn’t feel like home, and my closest friends were a phone call and a plane ride away. I remember lamenting to my husband that I felt lonely and isolated, and I just needed more friends….
The world needs more girlfriends. And I found some. I grew roots. I met people. I built my practice, I joined a running club, I started CrossFit, I moved to a new neighbourhood, and my circle began to expand. Now I have those go-for-coffee friends that I so longed for ten years ago. I have those come-over-in-my-sweatpants friends and those listening-ear friends, those go-for-a-walk friends and those can-you-do-me-a-favour friends.
And yes, I still have all those friends I mentioned at the start, who are still a phone call and a plane ride away. And they mean the world to me too.