I was never one to have a slew of giggly girlfriends. Throughout elementary school, I had maybe three girls (not the same every year) that I considered my close friends. When I hit middle school, I met my best friend, Erin, who is to this day still my bestie. Hers is the kind of lasting friendship nothing in the world could replace.
I cycled through a couple of other girls in those three gods-awful, pre-teen years. I formed a semi-lasting friendship with one girl, Erica, and her friend Meagan, but we lost touch sometime around our senior year of high school. Another Meagan was a girl I thought was my soulmate-friend in middle school–but once we hit high school, our friendship collapsed. During high school, I had another wonderful friendship with Chrisden, but we also lost touch after high school.
It’s too easy for teens to start running with different crowds and forget one another. A girl goes through a LOT of changes during her teen years, and unfortunately, your friends don’t always go with you. It doesn’t change how you feel about them–to this day, I am filled with affection and fondness when I remember these ladies. They’ve gotten married, started families, and I’m on the fringes, where at one point I thought I would be a part of that process.
Despite those early connections with girl friends, I’ve always been a guy’s girl. The majority of my friends through life were guys; one of my earliest guy friends, Parker, is still someone I consider myself close to today. Once I hit college, the guy friends greatly outnumbered the girl friends. This trend continued until I moved back to Louisville after a short stay in Nashville, when I reconnected with an old friend (who hasn’t contacted me in months) and met Mayme, who became one of my closest friends. Not too much later, I found Ann and Bev–my witchy sisters.
With that being said, I’ll be the first to tell you that it’s important for a woman to have girl friends. What’s even more important is to have friends that you feel a deep connection with; women that remind you of everything the gender stands for.
Maybe I’m feeling philosophical. I just finished beta reading a book for my dear friend, author Talia Jager. She is a one-woman revolution. She has raised 5 beautiful daughters and is expecting a 6th child next year. Since I’ve known her, she’s released 3 books… with 2 more (at least) to be released before Christmas. Her books are so RAW, and they deal with very feminine themes–teen pregnancy, overcoming domestic violence. Her books make you remember just how strong the female is–despite society’s belief to the contrary.
We may not boast of physical strength, but the woman is a mighty force. We have an inner strength that shines in times of trial. This ties into my spirituality–the goddess. I revere the female body and all it is capable of (even if my own personal preference is to not use mine to its full potential as I don’t want to bear children). It is in my blood to care about women’s issues across the world.
I’m lucky to have an advent of lovely lady friends that have recently joined my life–mainly authors who I’ve connected with online. Julia Crane, Talia Jager, Pj Jones, Shea MacLeod, Lizzy Ford–these five women are ALL incredibly strong, brilliantly talented ladies. I feel honored and pleased to have found them. Those are just my eclective girls–there are other amazing women like Pj Port, Kathy Green, Penelope Crowe, Xtine (she knows who she is), and Cheryl Shireman, who have touched my life tremendously in the past couple months. There are more I’m looking forward to getting to know, such as Red, who haunts my blog and is having coffee with me on Friday I know I’m probably forgetting some people, but I really do feel blessed to have met so many amazing women in such a short period of time.
Maybe gender is such a focal point of my existence because I have such strong women in my family. Between my mom, my stepmom, and my grandmother(s), I’ve had nothing but good juju raising me. Not to mention the strength of my Aunt Glinda and the friendship and love of my little sisters. The women in a girl’s life shape the person the are, whether it’s the women who raise her or the friends with which she surrounds herself.
I draw daily strength from my friends. Their support, their banter, their encouragement and advice… this stuff is tantamount to my existence. More so now, than ever.
And that’s my philosophical ramble for the week, peeps. Please return on Friday as I ramble again about books!
I shall leave you with a link to check out — International Women’s Day
And… a must-read book! America’s Women by Gail Collins