Friendship is the wine and the coffee for my soul. Doing motherhood without them is like watching a comedy alone (weird, gross, and not all that funny).
I don’t need the same kind of friends as I once did. I’m a lot less patient with barelyscratchthesurface small talk . I have enough mind-numbing conversations with my children (God love em). I need real in my life. I need friends that are real, and friends that I can be real around.
Here are seven things I look for in a friend:
They don’t judge. I scout out people who I can potentially bring into my home when my bathroom looks like it belongs in a gas station. (One of those ones right off the freeway that you have to ask for the key and bring a friend, so you are not murdered.) They might gasp a little because they are human, they might even bring their own hand sanitizer, but they will not judge.
THOSE are my kind of people.
They will be themselves, and let me be me. I like my friends to be themselves without apology. WE DON’T NEED TO BE THE SAME TO BE BESTIES. I like all the flavors of friends and I don’t want to try and change each other. I have a friend that drinks decaf and makes her own yogurt. I have a friend that homeschools and hates TV. I don’t want to do any of those things…ever, and they’re fine with that. We love each other, and we also respect each other. Being different is a good thing.
Givers, not just takers. No judgement here at all. We ALL go through seasons where we need more and can’t give very much. That said, my giving capacity is chock full. (I just fed my kids breakfast and they’re all “starving”, for example.) For a friendship to have longevity at this stage in the game, it needs to be a two way street.
They are not easily offended. I already know that I’m going to screw up at some point and say something insensitive or do something hurtful. I need friends that give me the benefit of the doubt, and talk to me (so I can apologize) if I hurt their feelings. My 6yo is currently crying because my 4yo licked her pencil; I can’t do petty with my adult friends.
They don’t pretend. I am way past being impressed with a perfect life. I don’t need your dishes to be done, your butt to be tight, or your kids to be angelic. Also, small taIk is boring. I want to talk about our dreams and struggles, saggy boobs, and the gross things our kids do. Being real is my number one friend-necessity.
They see the best in others and in life. I want to keep it real, but I also want to encourage each other, and see beauty in the messiest days.
We can laugh together. I have cried with most of my close friends, but first we laughed. Laughter is what I need when the days are long and the laundry piles are endless. It’s what I need when life is hard. It is my therapy of choice.
The only way to do this is together. May we all find the ones that free us to be our best selves.