Doing Lunch; Or, A Treatise on Friendship in the Modern Age

I haven’t really gone out of my way to make friends since we moved here seven years ago.  I am fortunate enough to call my coworkers friends, and I get to see them every day and sometimes outside of work, so I haven’t really seen the need to find a friend group, so to speak.  I am not really that great at making new friends anyway.  I tend to be a bit reserved in person and have a hard time finding things to talk about with someone I don’t know well.

That said, I do like meeting new people.  I just rarely take the initiative for fear of being thought a weirdo or something.  So sometimes people have to work a little harder to draw me out.  Like my friend Julia of Julia’s Math.  We “met” on Twitter last year and went back and forth for awhile, then one day she suggested we get together for lunch.  CUE THE NERVOUS.  I had never really met anyone from online since the days of AOL chat rooms {nerd alert}, when a friend of mine and I met up with some boys from a neighboring high school’s tennis team to play a few sets.  It was weird and awkward, even though we had all been interacting online for weeks and weeks.  Looking back, I attribute it to the awkward high school age and the fact that we were a couple of teenage girls meeting up with a couple of teenage boys for the first time.  But I figured that we were both professional adult women with common interests, so it would surely be less awkward than a bunch of teenagers meeting up.  Turns out I was right.  Julia and I hit it off immediately, so much so that I was nearly an hour late coming back from lunch!  We have met for lunch several times since then and it is always a fun time.  We talk about everything from blogging to our kids to husbands to in-laws to work and whatever is on our minds.  We met for our semi-regular lunch date last week, and it was a very much needed break from a crazy work week.  Hopefully we can get our kiddos together soon so they can hopefully be friends too.  I’m really glad that Julia took the time to meet me, and even more glad that she still actually likes me!

I also got to meet up with Amanda, my BFF from college, last week as well.  TWO LUNCH DATES IN ONE WEEK SOMEBODY STOP ME.  Amanda was in town on business and wrapped up around lunch time, so she texted me to see if I was free.  Prior to that we haven’t seen each other in a good little while.  She travels around the country a lot and we don’t make it back to Alabama as much as we used to, so I was really glad that she had some free time when she was in Atlanta.  She just had a sweet baby boy in December, and he is one of the cutest little guys ever.  I just want to rub on his little round bald head!  She came by my office and picked me up, and I don’t think we shut up from the time I got in the car to the time she dropped me back off at my office.  Like we had been meeting for lunch every Friday for years.  Those are my favorite kind of friendships.  The ones that you just fall back into effortlessly.  We are all so busy nowadays with work and kids and running households that it is sometimes difficult to maintain friendships, especially when you live in different states.  Amanda and I have gone months at a time without talking, and then we’ll get in touch with each other out of the blue and it’s right back to the way it was when we saw each other every day in college, or every week after graduating when we would get together to watch The Bachelor {yes, we seriously had a group that got together once a week to watch The Bachelor}.

Over the years I’ve learned that if people make it difficult for me to maintain relationships {friendly or familial} with them, I generally won’t.  If I’m always the one who has to make the first move, after a while I’ll just wish you well and see you on Facebook.  I’m very much an “out of sight, out of mind” person, and at this point in my life I’m fairly wrapped up in my kids and my own household.  It kind of sucks, and it might be a character flaw on my part, but that’s just how it is.  So I’m grateful to have people in my life that recognize that about me, are in the same phase of life themselves, and understand what this stage of life and parenthood is like.

I have a lot of friendships that are worth maintaining, though, and I really need to be better about cultivating them.  Starting now.


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