I went out on Monday with my two closest friends. One of whom I have known since school, and the second of whom I met at twenty, so last year. Ok, 19 years ago. We had an amazing day. We shopped, we talked, we ate and we tried on hats.
|We totally rocked the hats….|
It was so lovely to catch up properly. We slip so easily back into each others company. I miss them, It doesn’t happen often enough, even tho we live within an hours drive of each other. Our lives are at different points- my longest friend has kids similar in age to my eldest. So the first time round we did it together- but now she has one in the first year at uni, and one in the last year of sixth form college. Her life is almost her own again, although that throws up its own panics and worries! My other friend has a child similar in age to my middle one, and is a full time carer for her elderly mother. Her son is at school all week, however her ties to her mum mean she doesn’t have the freedom she should- something she is attempting to change so that she can get her own life back a little.
Then there is me, back to being a stay at one mum after a period back at work. And if Monday brought up anything it is that I do miss female company, or actually, just company full stop! I do not know anyone locally with a similar aged child to Syd. I have nobody to go to the park with, or for coffee. And probably most importantly, I have nobody up the road with a small person for Syd to play with. I have a third very close friend who does have a daughter a few months older, but she lives a fair old distance away, especially when I have no car, so once a month is about our limit for getting together.
So how do you make friends? I moved here almost ten years ago, and have not a single person I can call a mate in this town. I do not cope well in the playground, while not bullied at school, I was certainly ostracised and have found large groups of strangers to be a difficult thing ever since. These days I rarely do the school run, so that isn’t even an option anymore. The same fear of groups rules out mother and baby groups etc, and in my small town there is not a single activity based baby group- no tumble tots, sensory classes or music sessions.
I have mates in my home town still. But while our long term goal is to move back there, shared custody of my middle child unfortunately ties us to living in this town for another few years a least. Thank goodness for the Internet. Twitter is my friend, and various groups online. They provide the chatter and support of a mothers group, without the fear of the wrong clothes. I consider some of my online friendships to be very real mates these days and look forward to meeting more of them in person.
How do you meet new people? Are you just braver than me and chuck yourself in at the deep end? Or do you have a smaller group of very long standing mates? Fortunately I am reasonably self-sufficient so it doesn’t worry me too much. And of course I have my wonderful boyfriend and my three kids to natter away to, but it would be nice to see other people once or twice a week I guess!