I have always harboured a deep terror of groups of women.
Don’t get me wrong, I love my girlfriends, but I’m generally more of a one-on-one kind of girl or small groups of chicks at a push…….hen’s nights, baby showers, girls-nights-out and the like positively make me quiver in my cowboy boots.
Generally speaking, I have always been much more comfortable around groups of men. With all due respect, I feel that men are much simpler creatures……what they say is what they mean, what they ask for is what they want, and beer, food and blow jobs are currency.
Gotta respect that.
I can’t put my finger on exactly why I feel this way. Possibly a left-over thing from school – isn’t everyone’s hang-ups left over from school or childhood or some such traumatic period when hormone-addled, immature brains were hard-wiring future grown-ups with issues?
You may remember when I first moved to ‘Burb Vegas, I was experiencing deep feelings of isolation.
I spent hours in the park trying to pick-up friends, and if I needed any social interaction I needed to drive across the city to my old ‘hood……not that I’m averse to getting out and about but with two kids in tow, often by the time you get there, it’s time to head home for someone’s nap or other routine related fun-ness.
After a beautiful stint home to my fam, I decided what I needed was to build a Village.
Somewhere where I had support.
Somewhere where I had a place to chat and vent and cry and laugh…..and most, most importantly, drink tea.
I needed to get me some friends. Stat.
I thought, in case you were up at night worried about me, that I’d let you know where my hankering for a Village now stands.
I have one.
I have a lovely one.
A chance meeting in a supermarket with an old friend, led to a catch up here and there. She knew some people, I met some people, and we all started to meet casually on a Thursday morning.
It’s not a mother’s group, per se, but we are all mothers. We don’t talk soley about our husbands and children, but they certainly feature because we’re women.
A group of beautiful, interesting, strong, funny women.
It seems I may be over my fear.
I read recently an article about how an hour with your girlfriends is equivalent to an hour with a therapist, but cheaper and with more giggles.
I’d have to agree.
It’s not that I need to see a therapist – well, I could probably do with a little stint, let’s be honest – but there is something about the way women connect through sharing stories that allows a feeling of ‘thank Christ, it’s not just me’.
We use each other as sounding boards.
We share the weight of our lives.
Guys connect through doing stuff.
Not necessarily guy stuff, but they don’t talk the way women do, as a general rule. They mostly stick to ‘dude’ topics………I know it’s a broad sexist statement, but I swear, it’s the truth.
After an hour with my friend, I know how she’s feeling about her life, her relationships, her work, her stuff.
Mister H will often come home with a mere snippet of information about the person he’s spent time with.
How many times have you had a conversation with a guy where he’ll drop something juicy, and you ask for more info and he looks all blank.
“What? He found out his wife is having an affair? Who with??”
“I don’t know. I didn’t ask”
“What? He lost his job with no warning and was given 10 minutes to leave the building? Why?”
“I don’t know. He didn’t say.”
Did he ask details? No. Probing questions? Of course not.
Naturally, if a guy WANTS to talk feelings, his guy friends listen and may even offer advice but they don’t do it like we ladies do.
A cup of tea and I’ll tell you all my feelings, a glass of wine and I’ll spill all my beans. A whole bottle?
(New York accent) Forget about it.
Not everyone is like me, of course. I am a sharer.
Anyway,I digress…… I have a Village now.
One of my Villagers has started training me in boxing. We bash each other around a park and I love it.
Another has offered to jump on board with Holsby TV because she wants a creative outlet.
I received a mega bag of hand-me-downs for the first time in my children’s existence. I love hand-me-downs.
Recently, I dropped D Man to the another Villager while I went to tell the Fuzz about the crazy shit that happened to me this week.
Someone else pops around with her kids in the witching hour so we can kill that crazy bit of time before the dinner/bath/bed vortex.
I have people to give my cooking failures to and we break down where it all went wrong.
I am a part of something. A Community.
As this community feeling grows, and our friendships strengthen, I have come to understand something very important.
It does take a Village to rise a child, but more importantly, it takes a Village to keep a mother sane.