I know for some of you this may not be a huge deal (hey, at least I did finally call, right?) but for me, it's a Biggie, Biggie, Biggie (Can't you see? Sometimes your words just hypnotize me. An I just love yo' flashy ways, I guess that's why they broke and yo' so paid...Sorry, sometimes early 90's rap just speaks to me. Anyone? Anyone?)
Anyways, my girlfriends are my life support, my allies, my therapists, my sounding boards and I pride myself on being a very, very good friend.
With my high school friends at our wedding...We couldn't quite get it together to smile for the photographer but I love this picture even more the way it is...
For the past five years that Mr Trail Mix and I have been together, spending time with my friends has been a major priority. When we started dating for serious, I forced myself not to be one of those girls who can never do anything without her boyfriend. And because of this, I've often received compliments from my friends on what a good job I've done of making sure to be a presence in their lives. And I'm like, yeah, I know it because it's been a conscious decision that at times, is frickin' hard as hell!
So, yes, making sure that my friends know I am around to hang out and watch Sex and the City has been at the top of my list for a while now. I've put serious time, effort and work into my friendships and have enjoyed reaping the benefits of such strong relationships. Basically, my friends kick ass and I'm so damn lucky to be a part of their lives.
But now that I'm married, something's changed. It's hard to put my finger on how, exactly, or what's not the same but all I know is things feel different.
Now, when I leave my husband for a movie night with the girls, there's some serious internal turmoil going on. It's one thing to go out with your friends when you're dating someone but now that I'm a wife? It feels, somehow, not right. I feel guilty, like I'm not making my relationship with my husband the number one priority (even though God knows we spend an inordinate amount of time together.) And guilt is a strong emotion.
But on the other hand, I resent these feelings. I don't want to assume "wife" as my primary identity because I like the "friend" identity as well. And I've done my share of eye-rolling when a friend becomes immersed with her new boy-toy and drops off the face of the earth. Right now, I think some of my friends are rolling their eyes at me and wondering if I'll ever respond to an email again.
This is a new feeling for me. Never before has it bothered me to leave my man for some quality time with friends. In fact, I used to welcomed the chance for a few hours apart when we lived in a studio together (one room, people. You try living with someone in ONE. ROOM. for two years...)
I'm a strong, independent feminist who, all of a sudden, can't bear to leave her husband for even a few hours. Major ew, right? At least, that's how I feel...
I love you all to pieces, dear heart bridesmaids!
In essence, it boils down to this: I love my husband. I love my girlfriends. But balancing the time spent with everyone has me still struggling to find a happy medium between the two.
I'm not sure what I'm hoping to accomplish by writing about this. Perhaps that some of my friends who read my blog will accept my open apology for having fallen off the face of the earth? Maybe some of you have experienced the same feelings and can offer up some insight or advice?
What's your take on this conundrum? Do you put your husband first no matter what? Do you feel guilty when you spend time with your friends? What have you done to balance the the conflicting pull between "wife" and "friend"?