When I was younger I never realized how much energy goes into creating a friendship. Early in life the opportunities to create new friendships are abundant. School, sports and other activities constantly push kids and young adults into new relationships and opportunities to create a friendship. College is like a friend frenzy with dorm life, fraternity parties and class study groups.
Later in life, finding new friendships is hard. Kids open the door sometimes but finding a connection with a mom takes time. Between sippy cups, screaming toddlers and endless interruptions finding real common ground is basically impossible. It takes spark. I swear it is like dating.
One of my most successful adult life friends is Stacie. We met in the street. She was walking with her baby boy and I was chasing Hadley around. I'm not even sure where Harrison was. Maybe in my belly? Maybe napping? Regardless, we had a fleeting exchange in the street and exchanged phone numbers. I gave her my number and took hers. Secretly I thought it would be like any other park phone number exchange, a dead end. Sure, they were all nice moms before and I would have loved to see them and their kids again but the reality is none of those park phone number exchanges turned into anything.
With Stacie it was different. That night she did something bold. She asked me to be her friend on Facebook. Whoa! Now this is a woman who is serious about becoming friends. I accepted because I was serious too. I loved the idea of raising kids together with a like minded friend who had kids the same age. I really yearned for that relationship. But a Facebook friend request from a basic stranger was a pretty bold move. Go Stacie!
Years later we have managed wine nights to actually talk with one another. Our husbands clicked right away and the kids are all within a year of one another. Sometimes we happen to see each other at the donut shop and other times we plan a vacation together. The families just work together and it is awesome!
So the challenge for today... if you are interested in meeting a new adult life friend, be BOLD. Take the extra step like Stacie did: Facebook, avocado delivery, cul-de-sac wine invitation.... make the effort and maybe it will be just the spark a friendship needs! Lesson learned: Life=long friendships don't start with dead-end phone number exchanges.