When I moved to a new city, I didn’t expect it would be hard for me to make friends. I am, after all, an outgoing person, always have been. I don’t have a problem striking up a conversation or reaching out to an acquaintance asking if they’d like to have coffee, lunch, drinks…whatever.
Plus, as a kid I moved around, so I was semi-pro at meeting new people and making friends. When I moved to Houston I figured it would be hard to meet people and knit in. Yet, I had been here a while, feeling all alone. I was 1700 miles away from my best friends, my mom, most of my family and going through the hardest time of my life. I felt completely alone.
Fast forward to tonight. My girlfriend is sick, so I have one of her kids here with me. The boys are playing nicely in the hallway as I clean up from dinner. The laughter coming from them warms my heart (side note, them whispering in the bedroom thinking I can’t hear them is also warming my heart). Earlier tonight the boys were outside playing with my neighbors’ son, something that happens frequently. Yesterday I meet up with friends (ironically who are from my hometown, but we didn’t meet until living in Houston) and we all went to The Color Factory. Saturday night a friend of mine’s oldest daughter babysat so I could go out and have date night for “National Margarita Day.” A few weeks ago, I took an adult only vacation (my first vacation without my son, he is 7) and my friends rallied behind me making sure childcare (and dog sitting) was handled for the 4 days I was away. Two Saturday’s ago, I texted a girlfriend to see if she wanted to grab dinner (at a kid + dog friendly) place. We meet at this fun spot that has a playground for kids! New Year’s Day, Eleanor Tinsley park and lunch at Velvet Taco with the “crew” Or better yet, the completely random afternoon “playdates” that turn into nights filled with good food and even better company. Lunch dates at Torchy’s, when neither of us are in a good mood that day, yet when lunch is over we’re laughing hysterically and so glad neither of us canceled. Randomly spending 5 days in Mississippi with my “boo” because, I wasn’t working and well why not? Both of our families needed that time.
Or, my two best friends who visited Houston back in January. What an amazing time! I cannot express how wonderful it was to have them here. We made sure it was a time the three of us will remember, forever! Having my cousin from Indiana stay with me while in town for a conference, the time we got to spend catching up was just awesome!
This week I’ll go to Rodeo Cook-off with one of my mom friends and Friday a friend is coming over for dinner.
All of this and so, so, so much more, are my gentle reminders of how truly blessed I am. I’m thankful for the friends who talked me through the darkest nights I ever had. Who heard (and still hear) the same worries, concerns and stories multiple times over, but continue to listen and love me through it. I’m thankful for my new friends who have welcomed us with open arms and open hearts.
Find your tribe and love them hard! You never know when and where you will meet the people that you cannot ever imagine living without. But you will meet them, sometimes in the most unexpected or interesting ways. Take one day at a time and live, laugh, love to the fullest.