I don’t think I quite realised it until just now. I read a newsletter in my email, loved some aspects of it and sent it along to Sarah for a read too. That’s when I felt it. I felt like I belonged.
I suppose we all crave acceptance on some level, no matter how much of a rebel we are. For the record, I am not a rebel. I’m a Questioner through and through. We might be fine the way we are, out and proud in our convictions but I truly believe that when there’s a connection, it strikes deep. A connection, acceptance, that someone is the way we are too.
I’ve felt lonely a lot in my life (although admittedly, right now I have a 2 year old handing me pretend cupcakes “they are sparkly and shiny Mum” and a cat licking my fingers as I type) but recently there’s been glimpses of great connections. You know, when a tiny bit of your soul recognises a tiny bit of someone else’s soul. (Cat, STOP LICKING MY FINGERS, it’s nice to belong BUT REALLY?) I guess it’s what’s called Finding A Village.
As Sarah said, there’s rarely been a week in the last four years that we haven’t connected just to say hi, see if our babies were sleeping (nope), see how our running was going (hers= great, mine = shin splint hell), and laughed at dirty jokes and swearing.
You know the great conversations when there’s no awkward silences, the chats where you genuinely want to know all the information? Yep. We have those.
It’s taken me a few years to find the tribe that is comfortable. I have Weezy, my BFF who hugged me this afternoon and said “Toddlers are horrible people sometimes, it’s ok.” Once I said to her “I thought you didn’t like me for the longest time when we first met.” She didn’t skip a beat and said “You’re a psycho, you know that right?” We then burst out laughing and I knew that she was part of my tribe. I love sitting in her lounge room and seeing the handmade things I’ve made and given to her BEING USED. USING THE THINGS. The things I made. Oh, my heart felt happy. Weezy is there to wrangle the kids, make the coffees, bring me biscuits, let me cuddle her babies and listen. Then I wrangle the kids, make the coffees, bring the biscuits and cuddle her baby. It’s how we roll.
There’s Beck, who lives over the saddle and in another little valley. We don’t see each other particularly often right now, but when we do – no time has passed. Once Beck abandoned her toddlers and stayed with me (pre children) so I didn’t have to be alone after witnessing a fatal car accident. Laydeepants is off on a big adventure in Melbourne and I miss her greatly. We haven’t spoken for months, and whilst she doesn’t have a family, she gets it. Thank god. I met Kristy at the playground last year, when she was the only one who looked approachable and was wearing Very Nice Clothes. It turned out she’d moved from Darwin recently with her 18mo girl and her husband and didn’t know anyone. I invited her for coffee the next day, and she brought cupcakes. She also didn’t think I was a stalker when five minutes into our meeting I’d invited her to my house. I sometimes think I’m like a pony or something, bouncing up to people “LET’S BE FRIENDS!”
I’m particularly grateful for Sarah right now, who let me share her space and has given me so much friendship and kinship over the years. She didn’t even flinch when I was high on painkillers after the birth of my eldest and told her “You mean stuff to me.” That’s a mate, right there.
It’s important to find your peeps. It can take time, and I’ve worked out you have to put yourself out there, be prepared to make an idiot of yourself. Everyone you ‘interview’ mightn’t be right for you, but never fear. Your peeps are waiting. You’ll find them.