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Posts Tagged ‘friendship’

I’ve written this post three times. The first time it was ready to publish, but my computer decided to turn itself off all willy nilly. The second time I was on the drive up to Ohio and fell asleep and forgot to save. This time, well, here it is.

For the last couple of weeks, I’ve been invited to hang out with a group of Cara’s friends. Most of them have been friends for at least half of their lives (we all go to the same church), then there’s one “newer” girl, Talia, and me. I’ll make introductions to the cast of characters soon, but we’ve got Teva and Reina in the mix now.

So here’s the thing. I *think* these girls like me. I *feel* like I fit in pretty well with everyone. My raging insecurities won’t allow me to leave it at that, though. I wonder if I talk too much, am too opinionated, am not trying hard enough, am trying too hard, if they talk about me after I’m gone. I keep waiting for the popular vote to say “you’re out.” In fact, I’ve been tempted to just tell Cara, “Hey, if it’s not working, just let me know and I’ll stop coming by.”

The hell of it is that I really DON’T think they talk badly about me behind my back, but these are the things my insecurities whisper, fork-tongued and vile.

And girls, if you’re reading, I’m not looking for you to gush and tell me that I’m seven shades of awesome. I just needed to own where I am, how hard it is to be in relationships and feel afraid but push through. This is the stuff of life, after all. And it’s worth it.

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On Friendship

Friday night I went to Girls’ Night Out with friends from my new church. If you’ve known me long, you know that this is a big. huge. deal.  I’ve always tended to be a bit of a loner, an introvert. However, that’s been challenged lately.

Last Monday, I told my sweet friend Prisoner of Hope that I was going out with new friends. I asked her to pray for me because, “I don’t do well in groups.” She looked at me incredulously, and said, “I can’t let you speak that, it’s not true. YOU are the person who takes care of everyone, makes sure they know what’s going on, ensures they’re comfortable …”

Ok…

Then Friday night as we were leaving, I was saying goodnight to a new friend. She said, “I can’t believe you said you’re not social. You so are!”

So in a week, one person who has just met me and one person who knows my heart inside and out both told me that I was wrong about myself. Hmm. I’m listening.

I took all of that to my session yesterday, and the Not-So-Casual Observer and I hashed it out. We talked about what it would mean to be affirmed, to believe that I was a “valuable part of a group.” Let’s just say it was a hard hour.

Then today, I taught at AVC, our old church. My sweet friend Purity (new to the cast of characters, but like a big sister to me and known for several years) mentioned that I’m different (Thank You, Jesus)! She also mentioned that when we were just getting to know one another, several people told her that “heather just doesn’t want to be known.” Ouch.

Now, I don’t believe that was true, because the longing to be truly known is in all of us, designed by God. But I think it illustrates just how deeply wounded and afraid I have been for so long. I thank God that He’s changing that part of me.

It feels like I’m conducting an archaeological dig of my own past, the Truth, who I was created to be. I said to NSCO yesterday, “Why can’t something just be EASY for once?” Her answer had something to do with how many children I have; I’ll refrain from posting it here, but it made me giggle.

And so, hmm. Friendship. I believe that I’ve met two women at my new church who will become good friends. Now, I take friendship pretty seriously, but I’m sort of out of practice. Add to that the fact that I’ve never had friends who were peers and mothers (some of each, but none who are both), and I’m in deep water here. But the fact is that I WANT to have friends now, and that’s more than I can say for the last decade, so that’s something. Actually, it’s a lot of something. I’m pleased to discover this new person in myself.

And by the way, if the girl is reading who mentioned Friday night that she wanted a nickname on my blog, it’s Cara. Look up what it means, because you were the first from VCC. And I’m so grateful for the “moment” we had last Sunday, looking forward to this week!

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As I suspected, quite a bit of the six pounds was water weight. This morning I was down to a 2.5 lb. gain.  I’m still expecting to see that come off by the end of the week.

There’s a reason I’m working so hard to be on track for my goal, and it’s not entirely based on my goal date. You see, I mentioned some time back that the people I loved most in my church family (my spiritual parents and small group/closest friends) left to start a new church. We were called to stay where we were. In hindsight, I can see why. Had we gone with them, I know that I wouldn’t have been strong enough to hear God to invest in our community, to change churches and go where we’ve been called.

That said, things ended badly with the people who were like parents to me, and I haven’t seen them since. The friends that I counted as my best I’ve only seen randomly at church events, never intentionally. So much for friendship, eh?

In 16 days, I will see most of those people again. I’m doing the makeup at a casual friend’s wedding, and it didn’t occur to me until after she’d accepted my offer that all of those people would be there. In typical Heather fashion, I’m busting my tail at the gym trying to look as good as I can (like it makes a difference) so that I seem good enough, like I’m worth being there.

We’ve spent the last couple of counseling sessions working on being ready to see these people again, and I still have two sessions before the big day. We’ve worked through some possible confrontations, but the one thing I haven’t considered is how I’ll feel if he ignores me altogether. More fodder for my next session, I suppose. It’s nice to have something concrete to work on once in a while!

All in all, I’m trying to reconcile my irrational drive to lose another five pounds with the truth that if those people actually love me, the five pounds won’t matter.

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