I was catching up on a guilty pleasure of mine, reality tv, and Khloe (yes, Kardashian. Not ashamed 🤷🏼♀️) said “it takes a village to raise kids”. She’s not wrong. We all know that to be undeniably true. I started thinking yeah, sure, but not everyone has one.
Hi, it’s me, a member of the village-less crowd. A village gives you a sense of community, friends you can text to get you out of the house. It means having friends to turn too for advice, friends who know when it’s time to leave the kids with their dads and have some MUCH needed and deserved adult time. Sure play dates with the kids are nice, but let’s be real, momma needs some adult interaction over some Mexican food & a bottle of wine….. once this baby comes of course. I don’t need a date to the playground, I need a conversation with someone over the age of two.
It’s easy for people to say “just put yourself out there”. Sounds simple enough right? But what if you don’t where to turn? Before it was easy. I lived across the street or down the road & when the time came, we all moved together! Friends are so crucial, they’re beside you for the highest of highs and the lowest of lows. Whether you desperately need a babysitter or you need a pep talk after a stressful day, your village of ladies is so important. I have my tribe of ladies who talk me off the ledge and make me laugh until I cry but they’re thousands of miles away. Truth be told, I’m not sure where I’d be if God didn’t place those ladies in my world when he did. How I wish they were close so I could squeeze them!
So. What if there isn’t a village?
Truth is. Life gets hard sometimes and the days can be LONG! When we had Landon, we lived far away from family. My husband had duty every few nights & I couldn’t call my mom to come sit with my son because I needed a nap. Or a shower. But, I had my tribe then, my village. With our second baby coming in a few short months, the reality of being away from family and friends is setting in. It’s daunting and it is lonely. My husband & I very very rarely have date nights, we don’t have our families or friend families to spend holidays with. It’s just us. When we moved to the south, it was just us three. Our little tripod. Somehow the days got longer. Landon and I would go for multiple walks a day through the neighborhood because I just needed to get out of the house. I mean, how many times can you walk the same streets before someone wonders if you’re a creep or if you’re lost?
My poor best friends listen to fifteen minute long Marco Polo messages (the real MVP’s, let me tell ya) because I just need to feel connected sometimes. A huge blessing, for multiple reasons, has been I’m back to working full time! However, I work out of our home. I talk to people all day but it’s different than being next to a person, laughing in the break room or running out to grab a quick lunch together.
What can you do?
It’s easy to feel like an outsider, it’s easy to have a wave of jealousy hit you when you see other moms meeting up for a hang out. I know, because I’ve been there. Sometimes I’m still the lonely, depressed mom feeling like the ultimate outsider. It’s almost like being in middle school & everyone else is picked before you for the kickball team. I find myself avoiding social media sometimes because I know my friends back at home(s) are catching up over drinks, going on a hike or just supporting each other. It just drives it home and the tears start to fall.
I’ve started striking up more conversations at the park, finding people I can relate too, & paying attention to who Landon plays with when we go somewhere. I mean, maybe their parents are cool, right? Worth a shot. Surround yourself with people who GET IT, Mom’s who have been there and know what it’s like!
You won’t connect with everyone and that’s ok. It’s an unrealistic expectation to to assume you’ll find an instant bestie/friend soul mate in every person you meet. Especially if you’re like me and don’t really like many people 😜
Remember, give yourself some grace. Find your joy & take a few minutes to do something for yourself. Find a few women who leave you feeling empowered, who give you sound advice & women who will be there. Friends you can count on for the big things and the small things. The friends who will run to the grocery store with you because it’s the only time you can squeeze in to be alone and maybe have a little bitching sesh. Those friendships are rare.
It does require a push outside of your comfort zone and after a year, almost, I’m learning. Surprisingly enough, this little blog space I’ve been working to build is starting to give me a sense of community! I’ve been fortunate to connect with people who otherwise, I may have never spoken too. I am thankful ♥️
Life can be lonely, find your village and love them hard.