A Lack in my Life

Today I was stricken by how much I miss being part of a family. Of course I have Ryan, and he and I are our own family; and we have family who love us and support us even though they’re far away. I miss being part of a tight-knit community in frequent contact with each other and in close proximity to one another; able to gather and share life often. That kind of thing can be created with anyone anywhere, but we have been largely unsuccessful so far here in Nashville.

We have friends who are very nice people and fun to be around, but we don’t see them very often. We have friends we’ve made in middle school, high school and college, but we are all scattered and have mostly grown apart. We had a wonderful “film family” of our crew in Oklahoma, but then we moved away. We joined a Lifegroup at our church, but they all live close to each other and we are 45 minutes away from them, meaning they are able to have a closer friendship with each other than we are able to have with the rest of the group. None of this is anyone’s fault; it’s just life, but it sure is unfortunate.

People need to feel needed in many ways. I feel needed by Ryan and at my job, but without feeling like anyone needs me as a friend, I feel sad, lonely, and lacking in purpose. Within the past couple of years, I have been left out of some things that I just always thought I’d be a part of. I suppose I shouldn’t have taken it for granted that I’d be wanted at those events, and it makes me feel wretchedly bratty that I’m even expressing this, but I need some kind of outlet and that’s what my blog is.

Maybe I’m just learning the lesson that friendships are increasingly difficult to maintain as we get older. Maybe my specific circumstances of going through high school, college and much of my twenties in three different places has been what’s made it difficult to make and keep close friends. Maybe I’m just not the sort of person people really need in their lives. At least that can be changed if it’s the case, but I struggle with where to begin.

I see people gather with the families they were born into and, although I absolutely love where Ryan and I are in our life together, I envy their proximity to their parents and siblings. I see people gather with the families they’ve created with friends, and I wonder why I always feel like I’m on the outside looking in. Is it because we live in a part of town that none of our friends live in? Is it simply not time for something like that to happen to us for a reason I don’t yet understand?

In Oklahoma, our house was “the” house. We threw Halloween parties, New Year’s Eve parties, and birthday parties there; we hosted meetings and craft gatherings and just a lot of fun hangouts there. Oh, I miss it so much. It seems so far away from where we are now – not just geographically, but in terms of how we fit in with our peers socially. I want to change that, but I’m not sure how. I know that “to have a friend, you have to be a friend,” and for now I suppose what I can do is try to initiate more hangouts, although my admittedly pessimistic outlook immediately remembers the many failures I’ve had in those attempts since moving here. It’s hard to keep on trucking when your tires are running out of air.

I just typed “Sorry for the downer of a post!” Then I erased that. I am a three-dimensional person with all kinds of feelings, and especially after my departure from Facebook, I refuse to put only my “highlight reel” online. This is what I’m feeling right now in my life, and although it’s a shame to feel this away, I’m not ashamed of myself for feeling it. So, if you’re still reading, thanks.:)

Ashley - September 16, 2012 - 2:06 am

You’re preaching to the choir :)

Although I’ve had a bit of a different journey, being “away” from the loop of friends (and family) has definitely given me a completely different perspective on true friendships. And how much it takes to maintain strong bonds. This opportunity has really shown me how unimportant those who my world “revolved around” are these days. And how lucky I feel to have Matt by my side – even if the people I thought would be, aren’t. Hope you’re able to keep your chin up, and hug Ryan extra tight 😀

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