Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Women need Women

Women need each other, on a basic, primal level. Our society does not lead us to believe that this is true- but it is. We need women in all of our stages of life- childhood, adulthood, mommyhood and golden years. We need friendships that are comfortable, with no demands or obligations.

We need other women to help us care for our children. We need other women to love our children, and to open up a different world of nurturing to them. We need female companionship.

We need a tribe.

In this stage of my life, I need a mommy tribe. Someone to compare notes with, to sit with in silence. To have the deep discussions with, and to laugh through tears with.

Women can have some of their deepest and profoud relationships with each other. Deep and lasting bonds that transcend all of life's ups and downs. Friendships that stretch and allow growth. Friendship that says the hard things, that supports, that holds the hand that is empty, that shoulders the burden. Friends that stay if the man doesn't, and linger after the children are grown.

The world will tell you this isn't true. That women are catty, nasty. That they are all gossips and cannot be trusted. But the world is wrong.

I spent tonight at a table with a wonderful group of ladies. I sat next to a friend, somebody I admire and think the world of. Somebody I always felt like I would have time to get to know better.

Time ran out. She is moving away, and it breaks my heart just a little bit. Sitting with her tonight and talking with her about the things that really matter, the deep down heart issues, I felt a deep regret that I hadn't known her more, spent more time with her, gotten to know her better. Because I felt that split second feeling of deja vu that you get only with those people who truly see you. A feeling of being known on a core level.

She is part of my tribe, my heart family, and I didn't appreciate it enough. I didn't see it as clearly as I should, being so insulated and focused on my own little world.

And now the chance has passed, and I will miss her so much more, because I realize what I am losing.

It will never be easy for me to trust other women. It is an effort to be vulnerable and to put my sappy self out there. It's scary to say all of the things that come to mind, and to go beneath the surface to the deep heart issues we all have. But I will, no matter what. Because I need to see myself reflected back in other women, other mothers. I need to see the flicker of recognition when somebody understands something I am grappling with. I need other women to help me walk through this life. Or to keep me from selling my children. Either/or.

To my sweet friend moving so far said tonight that you thought I had a gift with writing, that you wished you had a gift like that. I held back from saying what I was thinking, and I shouldn't have. You have a gift of far more importance than putting words on a page. You SEE people. You LISTEN. And whenever I talk with you or see you, you make me feel cared for. Nobody on earth will ever forget how you make them feel, and in that, my dear sweet friend, YOU have an amazing gift. And you will be very very missed.