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Posts Tagged ‘friendship’

The women who inspire me on a daily basis, help me when I’m in a bind, respond to my texts at the wee hours, and let me drop in for a playdate or weekend getaway… These women are my Mom Tribe. It’s so easy to name them, but it’s not easy to get them all together in the same place at the same time.

Some of my tribe is just down the road while others are across the country. But no matter the distance, it’s important to make the time to reach out and reconnect.

merci Chocolates offers a collection of is fine European chocolates. With a name that literally means ‘thank you,’ merci and is a delicious, thoughtful way to say thank you to a friend you’ve lost touch with, haven’t seen in a while, or needs a reminder of how much they mean to you.

Brittani and Ami are close friends in distance and in heart. We actually live in the same town. Brittani watched my kids when I was working full-time at the news station and I have the absolute sweetest photos of her rocking Big T to sleep in the baby carrier. We’ve watched each other’s babies grow up and navigated all the paranoia motherhood brings together. Our husbands also work together and it’s priceless having some friends to vent to about a tough career not many people understand. I’ve always admired how neat and clean she manages to keep her house, but she’s never made me feel bad for my cluster of a home. We have tons of fun whether we’re out for a girl’s night or just chilling on the couch talking about The Bachelor.

Ami and I met at an informal homeschooling meeting two years ago when I decided to jump right into this new endeavor. I’ve always admired her passion for important issues, her family and her creativity. It can be really, really difficult learning how to handle homeschool and feeling like you aren’t doing it right. She’s constantly reminding me there’s no right and wrong and that the possibilities are endless. We also totally vibe when it comes to books and dreaming and whether she realizes it or not, she’s always inspiring me to be the best version of myself.

You don’t have to be a mom to be a part of my mom tribe. Christina and I hit it off while working at a news station together oh, six or seven years ago. There’s no question that Disney played a big part in our friendship. So much so that last year started planning a girls getaway at Walt Disney World. The idea was to go without my kids and ride all the coasters and see all the shows they hate. Little did I know I’d be adding one more to our brood. I thought about canceling but Christina suggested we still go and said we could make it a chill trip. I didn’t realize Disney could be done in chill mode, but it can, and it was marvelous.

From spa days to fancy dinners, sleeping in, and going at a preggo pace, it was a delightful girls getaway and I’m so glad we did that.

Maybelline and I met in college at Black Student Union. We immediately clicked. I gravitated to her uplifting positive spirit. Though she’s across the country I can still see her light shining through every picture, status update, or video message she sends. When I think of #momgoals or #womangoals, I think of her. She encompasses so many qualities of a person I aspire to be. Her children are woke, she’s raising them to be strong spiritual little beings, and she gives relentlessly. I love how open and vocal she is about her beliefs and how she’s not afraid to stand her truth, even if it’s contrary to popular opinion. And when my daughter and I decided to take a homeschool trip to Washington D.C. she didn’t hesitate to open up her home as a cozy hotel.

How amazing is technology where we can become friends with people who otherwise would have been strangers our entire lives? If it weren’t for blogging I likely never would have met Vanessa, one of my best friends and a huge piece of my mom tribe. Our friendship started online but evolved to include trips to visit with each other and our kids have become friends as well. She’s often the first person I tell about a new big idea or dream and she supports me and all of my crazy ideas. She listens to my rants and keeps me grounded. Everyone needs a friend like that.

My friend Emily is another friend I met on Twitter when we were pregnant with our oldest daughters. That was eight years ago! It seems like I’ve witnessed her go through several moves through the years, and I probably have. Her husband is in the Navy. Sadly only one trip brought her close to us, but it was a short stint in Texas and we missed our change to meet up. So no photo together. I’m putting it on my dream board though so I know it’ll happen. I live for our late night texting and Marco Polo chats. I’m sure sometimes I annoy her with my rambling but she hasn’t told me to shut up yet and I love her for that.

Finally, a cornerstone of my mom tribe is my own mom and sisters. My kids absolutely believe they have the best aunts and if given the option of going to Granny’s house or doing anything else they will almost always choose Granny’s. I feel so blessed to have family close by who are always willing to help and to offer a couch to crash on while my kids run wild when I just can’t make it through the day.

I could go on and on with half a dozen more friends and other women who probably don’t even know I secretly adore them. The truth is while writing this I’ve been asking myself if these women even realize how much they mean to me. Probably not, because I don’t tell them. I say thank you, and give hugs and my cup is so full after a chat with any or all of them. But I need to make sure I let the special people in my life really know how important they are to me. Whether it’s a simple text, a quick message, a thank-you card or box of chocolates, it’s important to be deliberate about expressing our gratitude to the ones who make up our tribe.

People ask me how I do it all and the answer is  I don’t. I have so many different people I can count on when I need support. They say it takes a village to raise a family. It takes a tribe to raise a mom. I’m so glad I have mine.

It was never really hard for me to make friends growing up. I was always one of those extroverts who looked around for the quiet introverts I thought needed my friendship. It wasn’t until fourth grade that I met my best friend. And we are still pretty close today.

We were making totem poles at the beginning of the school year. We were instructed to put items on the totem pole that help describe us.

I noticed the girl working on her project had a rabbit on hers. It seemed strange so I asked her why she put that there and she told me it was because she’s as swift as a rabbit.

“I bet I’m faster than you,” I challenged, and she accepted. Playground at recess. It was on.

We went to open end of the playground with lots of running room. We had an audience nearby watching, cheering us on, and keeping us fair. I didn’t have a doubt in my mind that I’d win.

“On your mark. Get set. GO!”

We both took off running but didn’t get far before we heard a strange noise. Someone farted. (It wasn’t me). But we both laughed the whole way down the field. I can’t remember who won but it didn’t matter. That moment is what started our unbreakable friendship.

We’ve had our ups and downs as any friends do, but Shannon was my first true loyal friend. We were close all through middle school, which is arguably the most brutal grades in school socially.  She stuck up for me when people made fun of me. We talked each other out of bad decisions, and encouraged each other through tough times.

In junior high we both were cut during dance team tryouts, and we cried together. She stood by my side as I was rejected by several boys. And we passed origami notes like no other.

Our friendship survived high school, even after my cross-country move. It’s survived two marriages, three kids and many phone numbers. We don’t talk nearly as much as we used to, but thanks to apps like Snapchat and MarcoPolo that allow us to talk in sporadic moments we’re able to hide from our kids, we are once again chatting it up like we used to.

Shannon wasn’t my only friend, but she’s always been my most constant. Every conversation feels like we can pick up from where we left off. We don’t feel judgement from one another and we knew we could always rely on the other.

I would love it if each of my kids found someone like Shannon in their lives. Someone who you can have disagreements with, even fights you’d think would end the friendship, only to come back together after some time apart to cool off. Friends who you can trust not to let you do things you’ll seriously regret later. Friends who won’t peer pressure you to do something you really shouldn’t be doing.

My daughter is very much like me–A social butterfly, yearning for close friends. I worried that might make homeschooling a challenge for her, but I guess some kids find a way to thrive because she manages to find friends everywhere we go. From the fast-food playground to homeschool co-ops and her new favorite: Cheerleading.

Her teammates are motivating and encouraging. They also inspire her and despite the stereotype, are just plain nice.

Since she’s not in a regular classroom scenario her friends are many different ages. She’s the youngest on her squad, at church she’s the only girl in her class, and at co-ops there’s a good mix. Then the two friends she invited to her birthday party at the beginning of summer were friends from her kindergarten class. So she’s definitely all over the map when it comes to her pool of friends but it’s fun for me to notice which sides of her come out depending on who she’s around.

I try to have periodic conversations with her about what makes a good friend, so she not only knows how to choose them, but how to be a good friend. She’s very aware of which friends make her feel better about herself, which ones make her want to be better, and which ones don’t.

Learning to form strong friendships from an early age helps kids as they get older, and I want to make sure she focuses on quality over quantity.

Psychologist Dr. Alvord said “Research shows that even having one close friend serves as a protective factor against bullying.”

When kids are surrounded by good influences, chances are they’ll be encouraged to make decisions that they want to make. A good friendship should encourage our kids to be the best they can be and give them a little push to want to succeed.

That was the case for me growing up. And I hope both of my kids finds a best friend like that the can count on. Sometimes I wonder (and secretly hope) if it might even be each other.

Did you have a best friend growing up? Do you still keep in touch?

The role of friendships gets even more important as our kids get older and face peer pressure situations. As you may remember, I’m a #TalkEarly ambassador helping to spread awareness about the importance of talking to our kids at a young age about alcohol safety. Though we don’t drink it doesn’t mean it’s a topic we should ignore. You can log onto the #TalkEarly page for more information on building a lifetime of conversations with kids around alcohol responsibility. And if you would like to read more form Dr. Alvord’s interview with Responsibility.org, you can find a link to the full blog post about it here.

Responsibility.org sponsored today’s post, however all thoughts, opinions and stories are my own.

Nothing like good friends you can text any time about anything, call when you need a last minute favor, or pick up where you left off even after months, weeks, or years without talking.

I’m so thankful for my many friendships. I don’t know what I’d do without my buddies.

friendsThis is me with two of my best friends: Allisa and Brittani, taken by another best friend: Taylor.

 

Hi! I’m Jennifer Borget

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I'm a part-time journalist, full-time wife and mother striving to make the world a better place and inspiring others to do the same. This is the space where I share my journey in making the most of every day.

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