Friday, March 30, 2012

Make New Friends

I've always struggled with making new friends. Not exactly conducive to a life constantly on the move in the military, but I'm working on it! I'm so glad that I always get to move with my very best friend, JT. And I also feel so lucky to have a "built in" best friend in my little sister.

The first 18 years of my life were spent in the same town, so I graduated high school with people I went to elementary school with. I was never in the popular "cool group", and I feel like that affected my self esteem. Clemson is a pretty big school so I struggled a little making friends there at first. But I eventually found my footing, and my two best girlfriends to this day are my classmates/roommates I met ten years ago this year at Clemson. When we moved to Hawaii, it was difficult to make friends there because there is a dramatic divide between the kama'ina (locals) and military (as in locals don't like military). Since I was working full time with locals, and then going home to a military base, it was challenging. In Michigan, most of the friends I made were my co-workers, but we didn't really hang out much outside of work until I got laid off. (I guess I felt nervous about trying to hang-out outside of work, because if it didn't "work out" it would make for an awkward work day? Or maybe I just assumed that everyone already had enough friends and didn't need ME? Who knows!)

When CJ was born, it suddenly became much easier for me to make friends. He makes me feel more confident, and is my "ticket" to talk to other Mamas. With him on my hip I'm not nearly as worried about being rejected by a potential friend, because I'm thinking more about him (and the 500,000 other things on our to do list). I had a really great group of Mommy girlfriends in Michigan, and I really miss them. We would have play dates, and moms nights out.

When we first moved here to San Diego I tried to find where I fit. Honestly I was a little intimidated by the beautiful "SoCal" women (I don't usually wear makeup or do my hair or dress up) so I was worried I wouldn't fit in. We don't live in "base housing" so I don't meet many other military wives (and the Dental Corps doesn't really have a great support system for spouses here). We live in a primarily "older" community so it has been hard to meet neighbors with kids. I joined a group on but it didn't end up being a good fit for CJ and me. (The moms were all much younger so we didn't have much in common and their babies were younger than CJ, so naptimes didn't coordinate very well. We both needed friends closer to our ages, and similar lives.) I joined MOPS and made some good friends there as the year has gone on. This fall, I got "lucky" that another group on had an I tried it out. Happy to say I found my fit! :) Most of the ladies are nice, fun and they are primarily in their early 30's. (The group has a monthly wine night, how can you NOT love THAT?!) and their kids are close in age to CJ!
A whole bunch of us are pregnant at the same time due in the next two months so that is fun too!
The group hosted a "Group Baby Shower" which was so nice! We had lunch down in La Jolla.
All of the preggos in the group. (This post is already SO late because one lady had her baby already! I had to get it posted before anyone else did! HA!)
In addition to the lunch, they also gave each pregnant lady a color coordinated "Hospital Survival Kit". (Pink-girl, Blue-boy or Green). Super cute! I can't wait to wear my pink socks at the hospital!
One of my new friends. Her daughter is exactly a month older than CJ, and her due date with her baby boy is exactly a month before Baby Girl's due date! :)
"Make new friends, but keep the old" was a song we used to sing in Girl Scouts when I was younger. I'm thankful to have friends scattered across the country, and I try hard to keep in touch with everyone as often as I can! But, I'm also so glad to be making new friends here in San Diego, it definitely helps it feel more like home!

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