Thursday, September 24, 2015

finding community + a giveaway

I hit the girlfriend lottery. First of all, my parents gave me a built in best friend forever in my sister, my other half. Then, in the sweet years of dorms and apartments and roommates, I was blessed with even more friendship and sisterhood than one girl can hope to have in a lifetime.

These women, we know each other. Time can pass between visits but when we're together it's like no time at all. We always pick up right where we left off and get right to the heart of things. These are not surface level friendships, they're not just girls to get out of the house and do something on the weekend with, they are heart and soul.

But all these friends are not here. They're not even close to here. And sometimes here can feel really far away from there, and if I'm being honest, a little lonely.

I want a community. We were created to be in community. With other believers, women like me to hold me accountable, to confess hard stuff to, to pray for me and with me, to walk alongside me. And, yes, to watch the Bachelorette and eat ice cream with me on Monday nights when T.J. is on call.

And it's not just girlfriends I'm aching for, I also want to find a church I love, and a community group that both T.J. and I can be a part of (when he's not working). Friends for me, and friends for us as a couple.

T.J.'s residency program is pretty fantastic in that it came with built in support system of other residents and their families. It's great because we're all going through these fun years of residency together and they really get it. And I'd really like to foster some of those relationships into something deeper. But while I work on that, I'm realizing just how hard it is to meet people and make friends after college. It's a problem I haven't faced until now since I was living with best friends up until 6 months ago.

So with all that in mind I've had to employ some new "tactics" to put myself in the way of potential friends....

For starters I am overly friendly with the Starbucks baristas, they always seem young and fun and I already know we share a love of blended coffee drinks.

When walking Hunley, if I see any other gals out walking their dogs, I make a beeline in their direction. I'm pretty sure they can sense my "maybe if our dogs become friends and then you and I can become friends and have dinner together when our husbands have to work late" desperation that I'm putting out there.

I say yes to everything. I always kind of thought of myself as a homebody, and I am, but lately any random request to get out and hang out with folks, I am the first to say "count me in!!"

I have in general started participating more with social media- commenting more, emailing back and forth with other bloggers. It's amazing and wonderful how the internet can be used in positive ways to connect us across the distances. I'm really hoping to one day have my very own story that goes something like, "I just started following her blog and then we exchanged emails, then texts and now we're real life friends!" How awesome is thing called blogging??

Susannah (who doesn't know it yet, but we're totally going to be real life friends one day soon, she's even in my neck of the woods) invited me to be a part of a little Facebook group "experiment" called The Web, all about building up your blog and your blogging connections, I leapt at the opportunity to make some new blog friends.  I've found some awesome new women to follow and support.  And in honor of community, of building each other up, we're doing a little giveaway below! Love for you to join in!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

3 comments :

  1. What a great idea, Shannon. I'm older than your mom and not one of the friends you are looking for here, but I applaud your enthusiasm and tactics! Church is one of the best places to make good friends. I hope you find a church community that feels right for you two. I have met about a dozen of my blogging friends in person, and the experiences have been wonderful. These friendships go deep and meeting face-to-face just helps the bond grow even stronger. Keep us posted!!

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  2. i love all of your words about community!!! i'm in a similar boat where all of my friends from high school and college have kind of moved away,so i don't really have that community anymore. and oh it is so hard/scared/nerve-wracking to make new friends as an adult!!!!

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  3. This has been a really popular topic lately! I just read a similar post by Joy at For the Love of Tuna (url exactly that). I do have to say, that I can definitely relate. When we moved to Memphis, I knew no one and my heart really longed for the ease and familiarity of those college friendships. My husband is a dental school student, so we would attend dental school parties and I'd force myself to be an extravert and introduce myself to every girl in the room. Surely there were other wives craving community just like me! I eventually found a church, joined a community group and made lasting friendships! Finding friends outside of college is a lot of work, but you sound like you are doing great!

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