Sunday, August 22, 2010

Friends Are a Great Blessing

Perhaps I'm just a fairly positive and grateful person, but I like to count my blessings and give thanks often.  We say a simple blessing before we eat our meals (Thank you for this bounty, let it be for the nourishment of our bodies, in Jesus' name, amen), I read a book about blessings to my son every night before bed, and I give prayers of thanksgiving every single day.  Today I was reminded that good friends are one of God's most delightful blessings.

I'm active in a group of women who became mothers in 2008.  After months upon months of suffering the lonely isolation of early motherhood, I joined the group in February 2009.  I wish I'd joined far earlier because it would have spared me months of unnecessary pain and sadness.

I didn't know anyone with a baby and I didn't have a good social support network. There were weeks at a time that I didn't even leave the house once. It was a pretty bad time for me.  I didn't join this group to find friends for my son, I joined to find friends for me.  And, boy, have I found some wonderful friends!

Joining this group of moms helped boost my confidence.  It was reassuring to find that I wasn't the only mom to struggle with things like breastfeeding and getting the baby to go to sleep.  Knowing that I wasn't the only one struggling made me realize that I was not a failure.

It's a little intimidating to join a new group and I'm a pretty shy person so I dreaded the first few meetups that I attended.  I'm thankful that these women were so welcoming and friendly.  When I was drowning in new motherhood, they really were a lifeline for me.  They've enriched my life in countless ways over the 18-months that I've been a member of this group.

I was so isolated and unsure of myself when I spent all those lonely months at home without companions. We really do need relationships and the joy of having such close friends.  I feel closer to some of these moms than I do to members of my own family.  That's not a slam against my family members, it's a compliment to these friends.

I know that around ten members of this group read this blog and I want you to know that I love you guys.  Here's to many more years of friendship!

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