I’ve been inhaling the funny, sassy, oh so real and sometimes dark Workin’ Moms on Netflix lately and something the character Kate (Catherine Reitman) said in a speech when her best pal Anne (Dani Kind) got married stopped me in my tracks (aka in my literal tracksuit forcing me to put my iron down as I love a little steam during a Netflix marathon as it meditates me-stop judging)…Anway, Kate tells Anne that her love is all she needs, or something like that (I’m not rewinding to quote unquote). I love my husband to the moon and back but I feel the same way about my friends and that line and Anne and Kate’s beautiful, real and often tested friendship is the greatest love story I’ve seen on telly in a long time.
The kooky duo’s friendship is the glue that holds the show together. It’s precious and real, and bonkers too and I feel bloody lucky to have unbreakable bonds like theirs in my life with people I know I can count on whatever this real life shit show brings (and brings).
Granted, my mates number count is lower than a decade ago (who can cope with 50 of the fuckers anyway) but I have two hands full of peeps I love and can be my monstrous self with, who have my back and I, theirs. Some I share a long ‘Morgan wearing, Body Shop spritzing’ history with and others a mere handful of years that feel like a lifetime thanks to the shared war wounds of motherhood, the ultimate connector and leveller.
I feel lucky to have my crazies close because trusting others becomes tricky the older we get. Time is shorter too, energy and finances stretched as adulting increases. Some friendships simply run their course and fizzle out, unable to survive without attention and or regular water/ wine. Others thrive whatever the resources and time but not many and certainly not all.
The thing is though, now that we’re parents, we need our friends more than ever. We require the solidarity, sisterly company, the understanding that comes with shared experiences (that male partners might miss-PMT anyone?); the reassurance we’re not alone with our hypochondria and all consuming love and fear for our kids (same thing?). We need to know we’re normal, our doubts, our fuck ups, our fat lumps, our mood swings. We’re meant to live side by side amongst others but seem to have forgotten this, becoming more insular and less happy. We thrive in communities.
No joke, my kids are my besties but I need my non related, not borne from my vagina kind of best mates in my life too. I need them always.
I need the phone calls and the stupid dms (the screenshots of odd balls who’ve added me on Linkedin), I need the rushed dinners and ‘let’s get drunk on 2 Mohitos and go home before 1am’ mash ups, the brain storming and banal chats, the problem solving and hair hacks. I know I’m lucky at 39 to have more than two hand fulls of 3amers, women and a couple of men I can know I can call at 3 am who won’t won’t shout obsecenities at me. We cry when one another balls with sadness, and weep together with laughter when we’re happy.
Like Anne and Kate’s friendship, these bonds are worth fighting for. Fighting your limited time and low frequency energy, for. Fighting kids’ diaries, dance lessons and episodic diarroah for. You need to fight for the coffee meets, Insta long voice notes and actually pretty early late nights. True friendship helps to builds a lattice of self worth deep within. It yields armour and resilience, reminding you how loveable and loved you are and also how fallible and human too, you see yourself in your friend, your mirrors. Together you reflect one another, learn, fall, catch, heal and grow.
Real friendship is so rare and should be valued.
So, if you’ve forgotten to make a mate date, sort it out.
Not all friendships, however strong they start, can last on thin air and randoms tweets. They’re desperate for facial expressions, voice inotation and bear hugs to see you through those oh so often sleepless nights.