NOTE: This is not my typical blog, but it’s dear to my heart right now. I hope that it can help even one of my readers, and maybe inspire you if you have ever or will ever feel this way in your life.
I used to be the life of the party. I walked around and I got to know everyone in the room. I did this, not because I wanted to be in the center of attention and popular, but because I genuinely love people. I love getting to know them, finding out their passions and loves in life, hearing stories about their lives. And, I was able to help connect other people to those who they shared common interests, backgrounds, and ideas. I loved helping people become friends. That is a joy and passion of mine.
When I got married, though, this changed. I married an amazing man. He is loyal to the core. He is loving and caring, and would do anything for his friends. His friends from college are scattered in other cities, and he still finds time to catch up with them by phone. But, he’s not a social butterfly. This was difficult for me because I had to step back in social settings. I didn’t want to overwhelm my new husband or leave him by himself. We did find mutual friends together, and that was amazing. But, things were slowly changing.
Enter children… My oldest is just now learning to be social, but was a timid baby and toddler. Before he was born, I was excited to have a child who I could have fun with in social settings and charge the room. I imagined he would like social settings just as much as I did. However, this child was not going to be social. It’s not who he is. And that’s ok. I love him for how God made him. But I, once again, had to hang back.
My second child seems to be more social, but I’m still figuring this one out. Even if he is social, that I am now preschooling both kids, and life is busier. And we have more activities. Add to that fact that we moved less than two months before I had my oldest child. I have had to start over with friends. I have found several amazing friends, but I often feel like I’m on the sidelines. Most of my friends have friends of many years. They are settled in their friendships. This is difficult for a social butterfly like me. I don’t have the time to dedicate to building many friendships, so I am making less friends, but deep frienships still.
My husband and children have changed the way I do social interactions. And sometimes I really struggle. Sometimes I feel like I’m not being true to myself. Other times I realize it’s just for a season. Being involved in events is not the same with little kids. I know that and I have accepted that.
And I know that moving changes social interactions too. I am learning to make less friends, but be intentional with the friendships I do make. I don’t have to be friends with everyone in the room now; just a few amazing friends make me happy. This has been a difficult change, but one that is a realization for me.
It’s been said that being a stay-at-home mom is the loneliest job. I would have to agree with that statement. But Mommy, whatever you feel today, this too shall pass. The days will continue, and one day you will have all the time in the world to do what you want.
I remember thinking that I wanted to go to a local play, but that it was not likely because I still had a baby. Then, I had a thought: someday I will HAVE to go to plays and events because I will no longer have children at home. That felt like a sad thought to me. So, I decided then that if I couldn’t have as exciting of a social life as I used to, I would be content with that. Sometimes, like today, I still struggle, but in general, having children is worth the change in my life. I know my butterfly has flown away for a while, but I know it will return again one day. But until then, I will cherish the few friends I do have, and continue to be a good friend to them.
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