I’m so thankful for the women in my life who make life better. This little group is my affirmers. When I spend time with them I come away feeling encouraged. For example, I shared a story with them about this attempt I made at crafting, and how it was a fail and I was so irritated by the entire thing. And they said, “You don’t need to be a crafter. You be you. You are just fine without crafting.” Which is true, and good to be reminded of. And when I say, “Oh that top is cute” they say “It is cute. You’d look great in that.” You know, good friend stuff. I think I am more aware of the sheer delight of time spent with women because I have been through transitions in the past few years in friendships and have spent some seasons lonely. My husband is, in many ways, my best friend. But he doesn’t use words like adorable, he doesn’t understand why an apron would possibly be a wonderful addition to my life and he does not know why, when one top is perfect for me, another similar one is exactly wrong. He also doesn’t connect to how spending time doing something frivolous like window shopping can actually encourage my spirit, as that is not how he is wired. Oh but it does- lift my spirits, that is. Not really the shopping, but the camaraderie and the feeling of being understood. My friends get why I might need to have an adorable apron, even if they don’t need one. It goes deeper than that though. These women truly care about me. And I truly care about them. We pray for each other, cry together, vent frustrations, laugh a lot, ask about each other’s families, get mad for each other, teach and learn, delight in successes and generally love each other. At dinner tonight we were talking about how the longer you work with a group there are two things that can happen: either little quirks and flaws become things that get under your skin about the people until you no longer even like them, or you just learn to love them enough to cover over that stuff. I am so deeply grateful that God gave me this little group of women to love me enough to cover over my quirks and flaws. They show me a piece of who God is in that and it lifts my spirits much more than window shopping.
Just got home from a lovely Girl’s Nite Out with my sweet friends I work with. It was very relaxing after a week spent having to remind myself to breathe. (see 2 blogs ago) We ate dinner at Cheesecake Factory and wandered into cute shops and oohed and aahed about perfect sandals, cute tops, the very item I needed to find for a baby shower tomorrow and adorable aprons. (I’m seriously considering the need to purchase an adorable apron at this point, just so you know.) The temperature outside was exactly right for window shopping- Emma describes that temperature as “It feels like nothing” which is completely accurate but doesn’t sound nearly as pleasant as it feels. A totally needed night away from responsibility and men and dirty dishes and shedding cats.