Three years ago, shortly after we moved to Los Angeles from Minneapolis, I found myself meeting up with Joanna. We hadn’t yet met, so you could say it was an “internet friend blind date”. (We had a mutual friend in Minneapolis that insisted we connect.)
One morning, while I was about 6 months pregnant with Maxwell, we met for coffee. And traditional to going on a blind date, I knew nothing about her, however per her confession (years later!) she had thoroughly read my blog beforehand ;) and knew everything about me!!!
Joanna and I met at a local cafe and settled in on their patio, which had many outdoor heaters. Many. (Extra emphasis on the many, because you know, southern California is cold in October.) With hot drinks in hand, we began chatting, and then said aloud to each other — at nearly the same time, Are you hot, because I am sweating!
And then we burst out laughing, knowing (I’m sure of it) that we were going to be the best of friends. #Midwestgirlsatheart
Not too much time later we both had a friend that “you just have to meet,” and suddenly we were a group of four. As someone who thrives on being in community, these women, Joanna, Rhiannon & Cristina, have become a lifeline to me in Los Angeles.
We talk about “all the topics” when we’re together, from pregnancy (and all it’s struggles), marriage, beauty, writing, travel, creativity, books, and finances. In fact, I’m sure people sometimes wish they didn’t overhear our conversations ;)
I’ve always trusted God to provide me with the right kind of community, exactly where we live, but to have it so continually — through all the highs & lows of life and parenthood and womanhood, has made me feel so cared for.
A time when I’ve felt the most-grateful to have this group of girlfriends? The first few months as I transitioned into my role as a mama of two babes. Those were hard months. I still remember. Obviously, because I hadn’t ever done that before, but also because there were so many hearts to be caring for, all at the same time — my heart included. Many times I fell back on this realization: the best way to get through “it” was to try and try again, but it’s so refreshing to have my girlfriends walk alongside me while I try. (Some things just need to be experienced, right? But that doesn’t mean we have to experience them alone.)
Our girlfriend group has grown from 2 kids to 6 kids, and as Cristina so perfectly explained it last week, it’s such a treat to know we can always count on seeing one other at the beach on Tuesdays. Once summer ends we’ll have to set up a new weekly date so we can continue to problem-solve together :)
“A friend is someone who knows the song in your heart and can sing it back to you when you have forgotten the words.”
PS. a fun (unplanned) fact: we all had babies in 2014! And can you believe Natalie will be turning One in October?