Last night, I went out with my sister and two former co-workers who are just about the best friends anyone could ask for. We had been planning this much needed escape from reality for weeks, as we are all busy with families, friends, work and other commitments.
We had decided that we would watch Sex and the City 2. We decided that we would have dinner. We had decided that we would put some effort into our appearance for our outing. J researched options, and we finally settled on our local CineBistro, where you pick your seats in the theatre, select from a wide variety of appetizers, entrees and desserts. And an extensive drink menu.
Just getting ready was an uplifting experience. Getting to dress up, put on girly makeup and accessorize was fun and put me in the mood for a great time. I drove over to my sister's and for the first time in two years, the place was quiet. No little girls running around, yelling, screaming or crying. We waited for our friends and caught up without children interrupting. It was weird, but wonderful.
When our friends joined us, we were on our way. We had enough time to catch up, boost our morale, share our worries and joys. And I wondered, why is it that we don't do this more often?
I truly enjoyed the atmosphere, the dinner, the movie. Especially the movie. Because we can all relate. We all have girlfriends that carry us through our scariest moments, share the journey we are on, provide us encouragement, a shoulder to cry on, someone to share our happiness with.
Especially poignant for me was the scene when Charlotte and Miranda have a heart to heart as Samantha readies herself for her date and Carrie is out. For any of us mothers, we know how hard it is to admit to ourselves that motherhood is not at all what we envisioned when we were planning a nursery. And regardless of what your station in life is, how well off you are economically, none of us know what we are doing.
For the longest time, I have seen several posts from some of my favorite bloggers trying to increase their support system. While I always thought that I had a huge village, it seems as though it has been shrinking, or perhaps, it was never as big as I thought it was.
But in the last few months I have put myself out there. I have asked for help, I have opened up, tried not to be so anxious in social settings. I have pushed my own boundaries and have begun to test limits, physically and emotionally. It has been scary at times.
And I feel better for it.
It is hard to do when you grew up isolated, alone and without many opportunities (or parental encouragement) as a child to make new friends. Add to that the need to feel safe and not venture out too much out of the boundaries, and you can see where I can get a teensy bit anxious in some social settings.
In reality, we all want acceptance of some sort. We need it from our parents, our spouses, our friends. We think nothing of encouraging our children, yet, when we are confronted with the same opportunities, we shy away from them, make excuses of how busy we really are, of why we can't.
But for the first time in a long time, I have said yes when it would be easier to say no. I have begun to solidify acquaintances in hopes of creating lasting friendships. And in saying yes, I have begun to eradicate my anxieties and self doubts. I am slowly becoming the me I want to be.
Last night, with my friends, and in watching the movie, my belief in people needing others was reaffirmed. Humans are social creatures. We can live alone, but our best memories are embedded deeply within our souls when we share experiences with those who love us and whom we love.
And no matter who you are, a fictional character or a stay at home mom, far from family, we are all uplifted by each other's company.
We all need validation, even if it's over drinks.
Especially when you get to dress up and have your dinner brought to you...