Growing up, I never thought much about friendship. I never thought about what a gift it is to be or have a friend. I never spent much time being grateful for the fact that I was never without a friend. I always had someone to play with, someone to talk to at all hours on the phone, and someone to share my deep, dark secrets with.

Some of these friends I still have. Some.

I was never the type of person to have a TON of friends nor could I ever understood the tier designation for friends either. “These are my A friends or B friends.”  I preferred a small group of really good friends – more than one, less than five. That worked for me.

Fifteen years ago, I left my East Coast home where I’d spent most of my youth and relocated to the San Francisco Bay Area. It was a BIG adjustment. I was lucky enough to have immediate and extended family to connect with but when the first Friday night rolled around, I found myself longing for friends and realized no family member could take the place of a close buddy.

It took some time, and finding a job, but eventually I found myself once again linked to friends, including a best friend. All it took was for me to be in a position to be exposed to potential friends. It was that easy.

Over the years, I made several more wonderful friends and then sadly, one by one, I stood by and begrudgingly bid them each a farewell as they set off for  new destinations — Boston, Texas, New Jersey, Florida and Portland. It was devastating but I held out hope that with each door that closed, another would open. I also felt comfort in having these friends, even if there weren’t in my backyard any longer.

Like I said, I never had problems making friends in my life. Having said that, I have found myself in an unprecedented dry spell. Yes, of course I have friends. But, for the most part, my very best friends live far away. I’ve also found that I’ve lost touch with some friends. Sometimes, the business of life and raising children is too much for the long distance relationship to survive. Sometimes, you realize that someone you’ve called a friend for a few years, is really more an acquaintance. People change. People grow apart.

Last summer, my toddler started preschool. From everything I’ve heard, your kids are a great way to make friends.  The preschool is affiliated with a temple. I’ve been to numerous events, have run into some of the same Moms, and I’ve yet to make a friend. I wouldn’t say that I had high expectations but I figured there would be at least SOMEONE that I would want to be friends with. Why wouldn’t I expect this? It’s always been that easy. So far, that hasn’t been the case.

There was one family that we met through the school and for some time were getting together with regularly. It was a *seemingly* great relationship. The kids liked each other, the family lives on our block, we are all working parents; it was a match made in heaven.

Until it wasn’t.

I started noticing that my husband, PB, was more often the one reaching out to make plans and suggested that perhaps he let them make a move. I was starting to question their investment. He thought I was being ridiculous and admittedly, I questioned whether perhaps I was being overly dramatic. We agreed to disagree.

Several months later and, sadly, PB  has come around to my theory. I’m sorry that I was right. I’m sorry that this family who we had many seemingly wonderful times with, doesn’t appear to be in it for the long haul.

I’m baffled. It hurts my head to think about it; to try and figure it out. But, how can I not wonder? This is all so foreign to me.

I guess like everything else in life that runs in cycles, friendships can too. And, I suppose I’ll have to patiently stand by and trust that that the universe has a plan. I just wish it’d give me a hint.

3 Responses to “Friends…”

  1. Anyone who doesn’t want to hang with you and PB doesn’t deserve your company anyway. Eff ’em for not knowing how cool you are! I’m sorry you’re having a hard time now, but you know you’ll always be on the short list of my Really Good Friends. 🙂 Just wish we lived closer.

  2. oh gosh – how comforting it was to read this post. i know – it’s sucky. but, i feel the same way, jen! since moving 5 years ago, i feel like i left my california family and have never been able to feel that closeness with anyone again. to this day, i still consider san francisco my true home where my heart lives – with close friends like you and with the city itself. argh. making friends is hard – especially when all you really want are your good friends close! hp

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