I think, regardless of where we lived, becoming a stay-at-home mom would have sent me on the hunt for more friends anyway. But friend-searching where we don't know anyone is sometimes daunting.
See, most people I meet are not new around here. They have family here, or maybe a home church, and lots of friends. Just about everyone I've met has been wonderful. But their lives are full, so the sense of urgency is just not there-- of course it isn't. I guess I underestimated the time this would take, and I should have known better. Making friends was always easy, until I became a mom. Is it just me, or for some reason, has that seemed to make it harder? Life is busy, we are no longer our biggest priority, and it's hard. I can fill my whole days just with mothering and home management stuff alone. It can be hard to determine how best to spend time, when days are crowded with so many "good" choices.
I have been so fortunate to meet some incredible women since moving to Tennessee. Seriously-- they are amazing. Brilliant, lovely, funny, authentic, adventurous, thoughtful women who also happen to be pretty fantastic mothers. In some ways I wonder if my overall disoriented nature isn't the reason I found them. Had I been home, I probably wouldn't have joined every Meetup group I could find, might not have sought out MOPS, might not have left our block party breathless only to return with my phone to (probably rather rudely) request a potential girlfriend's number.
I am hopeful I will soon be past the small talk, past saving numbers in my phone with a description of a girl so I will remember which new face she was when she calls, past the itchy awkwardness. I'm looking forward to cups of coffee at chaotic kitchen tables and nights out without crayons. I'm longing for familiarity-- when I won't have to so carefully measure everything I say (Heaven knows I'm no good at that!) because everything is said to people with no larger context of me. I'm looking forward to having girlfriends that are not long-distance, nap-time calls away, looking forward to having-- and being-- someone to depend on in a bind.
When the awkwardness fades and I'm part of a tribe, I hope I'll remember this. I hope I'll risk seeming pushy and call, invite, reach out to the girls outside.