Every woman needs a tribe. Again, I’ll mention my dear friend Marie Seiler. She knows. As one of three girls raised by a single mother, she watched her mother strengthened time and again by other mothers who listened to her when she was frustrated and loved her when she felt no one else did.
Marie also knows that we each need our own tribe, because she has one. She knows how much she needs one and works hard to keep them all close. Most of us feel too tired for friends at one time or another. We work hard for our families and when our kids are young, put friendships on the back burner. The problem is, many of those friendships dissolve and before we know it, what little pieces of a tribe we may have once had aren’t there anymore. We can’t let this happen. Force yourself to pick a few good women who will go the distance with you. Talk with them, write them a note here or there (not an email, but a handwritten note), and tell them what they mean to you. Pick up the phone and chat, even if you can only touch base for five minutes a week. But hang on to those you select for your tribe because you will need them more as you age. And they will need you. As we move closer to the “golden years” we begin to realize that the gold part isn’t so shiny. Middle age is tough, between caring for adult children and aging parents. If we have a tribe that’s seen our kids recover from chicken pox, graduate from high school, and even get married, they’ll be with us by the time we need to check out nursing homes for a parent we adore and who has dementia, too. They—the two or three who have loved us forever – will buoy us through those difficult middle years.