I’m a Good Friend to Have. Really.

It’s almost time for my family anti-newsletter.  Are you so excited?!  I would be.  It’s going to be chock full of exciting and interesting things we did this year.  Wait, we didn’t do anything exciting or interesting this year?  I’ll bet we did.    Okay, well, I’m sure I can come up with something exciting and/or interesting that I haven’t blogged about.  I mean, I only did like 15 blogs this year so I’m sure I did something else that I didn’t tell you about.  Expectations low, people.

I was going to blog about friends.  I find it hard as an adult to make new friends.  Of course, this is coming from someone who doesn’t have any friends from high school, so it’s also hard for me to maintain friendships. 


Side note:  I find it so fascinating when people are still best friends with someone they went to high school with.  Aren’t you sick of those people by now??  Haven’t you heard all their stories?  This coming from someone who still considered my best friend from high school my “best friend” five years after we stopped speaking, but only so I could say I still had a best friend.

Maybe I’m not a very good friend.  I’m going to think about that for a minute…..yeah, I’m not that great a friend.  But I’m a good friend to have, if you can put up with me.  I’m the kind of friend that had my friend and her two toddlers stay with me for a month before they relocated to another state.  I’m the kind of friend that will drive you to the airport or watch your kids and/or dog.  I’m the kind of friend that will  housesit for you when you’re out-of-town and consider that my vacation. 

I’m telling you, I’m a darn good friend to have, I just don’t seem to have that many.  Here’s the kind of friendship I need.  I need to be able to not talk to you for months, but when I do, it’s as though no time has passed.  I’m not a great day-to-day friend, but I’m there if you don’t need a lot of maintenance.  I literally could go DAYS without talking to people, but when I’m in the mood to talk, you can’t shut me up.

Facebook is perfect for people like me.  I’d like to see what you’re up to, but don’t really want to see you in person (with few exceptions, but you probably don’t know who you are).  I like to look at pictures of your family, but I’m probably not going to attend a reunion.  I like to make snarky comments on your posts and have you think I’m marginally funny, but let’s not meet for coffee.  However, if you’re in Colorado and need a place to stay, I’ve got the room.  I realize how weird that sounds.

I’ll read your blog and comment (hint, hint), I’ll like the pictures of your kids,  I’ll drive you to and/or from the auto shop, I’ll even have an incredibly long e-mail relationship with you; just don’t expect me to call you every day.

My sister and I used to play a game where we would literally drool and say, Will you be my friend?  I realize now that it was probably really offensive, but as kids we thought it was hilarious.  There’s someone new I want to be friends with right now and Sunshine accuses me of being a stalker.  So how do you make friends as an adult? 

The problem is I’m socially awkward.  Once you get to know me, you would think I’m an extrovert, but I really have a lot of social anxiety in new situations.  Do you know how many people I’ve worked with that have said, When I first met you I thought you were a rhymes with witch, but you’re really nice/awesome/fill in the blank?  Let’s just say it’s been more than one. 

I did just meet a new friend that had a table next to me at my first craft fair who I found to be awesome, but it literally took me an hour and a half of sitting next to her to actually say anything to her.  I just don’t know what to say to people I guess.  I’m terrible at parties where I don’t know anyone.  Either I run out of things to say, or as you can imagine, I completely overshare.  And I can hear myself say in my head, Shut up, Christy; but I just keep talking so there’s no lull in the conversation. 

I was in a situation last week where I had to make small talk and a woman I’d met before and would love to be her friend asked me how my Thanksgiving was.  I said, Well, my dog died and my kids went to their dad’s so it wasn’t great. 

I’m serious when I say I’m a bad country song.  I lost my job, I lost my dog, my pickup’s broke down.  Okay, I don’t have a pickup, but that’s really all I’m missing.

When I saw the look on her face, I said, I’m sorry, you probably just wanted to hear “Fine”.  And she said, No, it wasn’t fine so that’s okay.  Then she sat at my table for lunch with two other women and I just listened because I couldn’t get in a word.  I love when I sit with other oversharers, it’s like a friendship made in heaven.

Okay, so here’s the part where you put in your application to be my friend.  Kidding.  There’s really no good way to wrap this up except to say that at 40, I’m still a work in progress.  Will you be my friend?

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5 Comments

  1. I think it’s great that you want to make new friends! It can be difficult to make new friends but the effort you have to put in to meet someone is worth it in the end. I’ve made some new friendships this year even though I had to initiate most of them by just walking up to people and introducing myself, but I’m very glad I have done that now. 🙂

  2. An Adult Friend?

    Have you ever thought of getting a column publicized? Kinda like Sex in the City? You are a terffic writer! Christy… you are not alone in the way you feel. Having friends is not easy. I am one of those that have had some of the same friends since I was 15. Our friendships are ones like you describe wanting… you know that you are there for each other even if you haven’t spoken in months. To me.. those are the friendships I cherish the most. I am a very loyal friend when I know that I can trust the other person. I don’t let many “in” to know the real me. Being a stay at home mom now I don’t get a lot of “adult” time with others. I talk online to people or to Mom’s at school, soccer, dance class, etc. We get to share some things and I find it refreshing to get to talk to people that aren’t wrapped up in my day to day crap. I am like you.. I will do a lot for people… watch their kids/dogs/house, etc. I don’t expect anything in return. I know you are a good person. I’ve always known that.. even when you were not always so nice to me. I am the type of person that knows people without even having to really know them. I have a perception and I trust that. You are amazing in so many ways. I hope you give yourself credit for that.. you are a great Mom, very creative, organized, smart. You are involved in your kids lifes and do so much to make sure they are happy. I’ve always respected the person you are inside.. even when that might not be the person you were showing people. So, if you are ever wondering if you have an adult friend.. you have me. Just a side note… that sometimes we all can use someone to talk to and if you want to talk (not just type) you just let me know. Getting to actually say things out loud to someone else does make us feel better!! Wishing you a very Merry Christmas and blessings for a wonderful 2012. W

  3. Cari Kelley

    Erg. I wrote a comment and then missed the “post comment” button so it’s apparently GONE now. And it was brilliant. Brilliant I tell ya. Unparellelled advice on friendship and what not.

    Not really. Just a lil horn-tooting about being a good friend who reads blogs and comments on them. Even late at night, on my iphone, during a coughing fit.

    Anyway, I’m happy to be your friend and not just because we are related. I am intimately familiar with your awkwardness and enjoy your company all the same. (the same as if you weren’t awkward I guess)

    So keep working on it. Practice makes perfect.

  4. sometimes I feel like you describe me when you’re describing yourself. it’s weird.

  5. Where’s the application? I’m totally ready to fill one out!

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