May 17, 2006

Stuck in the Middle

I spent this last weekend with my best friend who recently moved to Reno. We’ve been friends for something like 16 years or so. Our lives are currently nothing alike, which scares both of us because we’re feeling like we no longer have much in common – and we’re struggling with holding on to our friendship at the level it’s been for so long now.

She’s not married and has no children. She’s living with her boyfriend, who has a completely different lifestyle than anyone she’s ever dated. Essentially, he’s a man in his mid-forties who lives his life like a twenty-something year old. Great, great guy – don’t get me wrong. Love him. It’s just that now she’s living her life more like she did when we were in our mid twenties, which is in the complete opposite direction of where my life is going and it is, quite frankly, changing our friendship although neither of us wants it to.

We had a nice weekend, but there was an unspoken unfamiliarity present the entire time. Yesterday she emailed me and brought it up. First time we’ve talked about it and first time I’ve shared some things with her that I’ve been trying to ignore in hopes they’d go away.

Part of the reason our friendship is changing is because of our changing lifestyles, yes. But another part of the reason it’s changing is because of me.

At the risk of sounding like a high schooler, I’m at a place in my life where, frankly, I don’t feel like I fit in anywhere.

Because I work out of the home, my time with my son is limited. I struggle because I have several different groups of girlfriends-without-kids and trying to see them and maintain my friendships is tough because they want to get together and go for drinks or to a movie. Things I can’t do with my son. I owe it to them to spend time with them WITHOUT my son, but again, my time is so limited with V and I’m very protective of that time. I try to see the girls as often as I can, but it’s a struggle and – as a result – my friendships are changing.

I have another group of girlfriends with kids. The problem is that all of my closest girlfriends with kids – the one’s I’d easily call to get together with – are stay-at-home moms. They spend their days getting together with playgroups and by the time I’m ready for a playgroup, it’s in the evening or on the weekend – when they’re spending time with their husband/families. So, I don’t get to see them very often either.

What I need is a group of girlfriends that are married, have small child(ren) and work outside of the home. I know these people exist. Statistics tell me that they’re everywhere. I guess I just need to figure out how to strike up a friendship with a few of them … but how?

I’m feeling like the outcast. It’s somewhat like I felt in high school, actually. I didn’t ever TRULY fit in with any click or group. I tried to fit in, but none of the clicks where an exact match for who I was as a person, so consequently I was always on the periphery.

So here I sit … stuck somewhere in the middle of my two types of friends, no longer fitting in with either group. They ARE my friends, and the ARE supportive, but our friendships have changed and it makes me sad. Very, very sad.


Blogger Diana said...

I am a mommy to an 18 month old boy, work 40 hours out of the home, don't spend as much time as I want with my son and hubby, and none of my old friends are at the same place I am.
Bad thing: I'm across the country from you.
I still think we are very much alike.

9:52 AM  
Anonymous Mama G said...

Across the country? Damn! Well ... at least I find comfort in knowing I'M NOT ALONE!!!!

6:45 PM  

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