Saturday, June 27, 2009

Reflecting ......

I've been thinking a lot lately. i know, I know, that can be dangerous! But seriously, I've been thinking a lot about my life, and the different relationships I have in my life with various people.

First there is my immediate family - Kevin and Bella. They are my world. I trust Kevin with my whole life, I have zero doubts about his loyalty, faithfulness, and love for me. I know he will always be there for me, no matter what happens. My little Isabella - I love her so so much. Everyday she grows and does new things. I am constantly being amazed by her. Her smiles and squeals fill my heart to the point of bursting! Just when I though I could not love them more, when I see Kevin and Bella, I can feel my heart growing to hold the love!

Then there is the rest of my family - My side and his. I love them all! They do drive me crazy at times, and I know I can get very frustrated with them, but I do try to take a deep breath and relax. I am closer to some than to others, naturally, and I don't feel bad about it at all. I used to be very close to my brother, but now it seems my sister and I are a lot closer. And really, how close can you get to a 17year old boy? I feel like I can connect with Kevin's cousin Dana on subjects that many others I can't. I love that she shares her organic/raw foodist ways with me, without being pushy. I can't list everyone here, but you get my point. Family will be there, whether you (or they!) like it or not. In-Laws can be hard to deal with (all in-laws, nit just the parents!) But I honestly try to make the best of it, and to get along with everyone. I think it is important to have a good relationship with everyone.

So, that's the family. Now, what's left? Friends. How do you define a friend? I think for everyone it is different. For me, being a friend means that you are there for them, always. You celebrate the joys in their life, and you are there to be a shoulder to cry on. You are a listening ear, and you are there to tell them your opinion/advice when they want/need it. You talk to each other, are open and honest. You don't hide things from each other, and you trust them. A friend is someone you can rely on to be there for you, even when you think you don't need them. You should feel comfortable talking to them, and when you do, you should not feel brushed aside. To be a friend you are available to them whenever possible, not just when it is convenient. You love them, they become family. And you remain friends whether you live 1 mile or 1000 miles apart. You don't have to see each other every day, but you make an effort to see them when possible, and when it really counts.

So, what kind of friend am I? It is a hard question to answer, because in doing so, there are people who may disagree. I know I see myself as one type of friend, and others may see me differently, but here is the friend I see myself as:
If you are my friend - I trust you. I support you. I will listen to your problems. I will let you cry on my shoulder. I will celebrate with you. I will cheer you on. I will do my best to be a positive influence on your life. I am concerned about you. I love you. I believe in you. I am there for you, you only need to call. In a crisis, I will do everything in my power to drop everything and get to you. I will offer my home, my clothes, my food, my bed to you if you need it. If you are struggling I want to help. I may not always know what to say, but you will always know that I am here. I hope there is never any doubt in your mind about what kind of friend I am. I am appreciative of YOU. I am loyal to the end. Most of my friendships that have ended, have done so because of the other person. Honestly, if those people called me up, I would not turn them away.
There are also some bad things about me as a friend, and I am willing to acknowledge them. I am too trusting. I get walked over easily. If a friend hurts me, I don't always tell them. I offer my opinion too much. I don't sugar-coat (sometimes NOT a bad thing). I do more for people than they do for me (While this is not a bad thing to me, it does end up in my own disappointment and hurt. Therefore I am working on this...)

I am sure there are more for both categories, but you get the point. In my eyes, I am a very good friend. The problem is this - I don't really have many friends who I can say would do the same for me. To be completely honest, I am hurt by a friend at this very moment. This person does not know it, or maybe they do, but I don't feel like I can tell them without a huge blowup about it.

When I had Bella, and I was in the hospital, I would have loved to have had visitors. Really, I would have. Everyone told me I would not want anyone there, but I really felt sad that no one came. Okay, that is a lie - Kevin's parent's came, and a couple of his co-workers and his cousin. But where were MY friends? Obviously I don't have family close by that could visit, but I had friends, friends that lived closer to the hospital I delivered at than they do to my house. Shouldn't that have been a perfect opportunity to see us? To meet my daughter? Even if for a few minutes. It really would have meant the world to me. Maybe I should have spoken up. So after we came home things were hectic with family visiting and us going out of town. It was at least a couple months before some of those friends saw Bella. There are some who still have not seen her. This does hurt me. Am I selfish for feeling this way? Maybe. But I know that if one of my friends has a baby, I want to be there in person to congratulate them, to see their little miracle, and to let them know if they need anything I am there to help! Of course I would not just show up, I would ask if they are ready for visitors/company.

So since I've become a mommy, things have definitely changed in my life. I have a daughter who is nursing and goes everywhere with me. I can't just go out shopping whenever I want. These are not bad things in my life, these are things I have CHOSEN. I chose to stay home and not work, therefore, I breastfeed her, not only because it is the best thing for her, but also it saves us money. I try not to spend any money unless I really need to. I don't go out for drinks, in fact, I hardly ever drink at all since I'm breastfeeding. I love to window shop, and go to the mall, or the park and just walk around. I like going to the pool, and, when the opportunity arises, I like to hang out with other mamas. The problem is this, I don't know many mamas around here. The closest are 45 minutes away. In fact, the closest friends I have are 45 minutes away, with the exception of a couple, and they work so it's hard to get together with them. I have a ton of online mama friends though. and they keep me sane.

So I didn't really want this t be a "pity party" for me. I don't want you to feel bad for me, that "oh, poor Michele has no friends". Because I do have friends, friends I have not even mentioned yet.

I know some amazingly wonderful people online. I have some of their blogs listed on my page. They are strong women. Women who have helped me a great deal in the past 6 months (some even longer!). Some of these women know me better than anyone in real life. Kevin makes fun of me, but I don't think he fully understands the connection. We are all new mamas (well most of us!) who all have babies that are just a few months (or days!) apart from each other. If they lived closer, we would all get together and hang out, but we are all over (even over seas!) and so we talk online. We compare, and share our stories. And it's not just about the kids. I know, without a doubt, that if I need a shoulder, one of them will be there for me. They will listen, and they do care. Maybe it's weird to some, but to me it's not. It is no different than having a friend who moved away. You don't see them, but you are there for each other still.

What is the point of this blog? I don't know, maybe I just needed to get some stuff off my chest. Maybe because I'm hurt inside, and I've been thinking so much about this, that I needed to actually talk about it. Will this make the hurt go away? Not so much. Will I stop being that person's friend? Maybe, but most likely not. I continue to pray for peace with this situation, and I know that God will lead me in the right direction with this. I just really needed to share. Perhaps I am alone in my feelings/thinking, but I feel that maybe I'm not. That maybe, as you are reading this, you are nodding your head, you are understanding, and you can empathize with how I feel. I do not want you to feel sorry for me. I don't feel sorry for me, because I don't have energy or time to do that.

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