How many friends do you have?
How much time do you spend with your friends?
Do most of your friends live nearby?
Do your friends know and are friends with each other?
When I was newly married, in my twenties and starting my career, my then-husband and I had a group of about 15 friends and we all hung out and did things together. A few people in this circle were extra special to me but mostly we all collectively planned pot luck dinners and days at the beach and lazy weekends smoking weed and drinking wine.
Since then, my friendships evolved into more singular connections: people I met from work, from my neighborhoods, from shared interests, from blogging, other parents, sometimes from friends of friends. The common thread now is that my friends are all over the place and I don't have a "hang out" group where I and they just knock on the door and fall into daily life. My friendships are also now more selective, probably because time seems more finite. They are also deeper, and most prominently, at a distance, some folks an hour or two away, some a state or two away, some a country or two away. I don't have that circle that I suspect comes from living and staying in one place.
I count about five or six people I would call in an emergency or in whose company I'm comfortable enough that I don't worry about when or how we connect. There's a wonderful comfort in that. But because they're most often not local, JB and I and they have to plan ahead to see one another and that's not the same as a knock on the door or an impromptu cook-out.
I live in the small town of Provincetown now and I think some deep and long lasting friendships are forming. When we first moved here JB was sick and now I'm slowed by my back pain so that's slowed our connections but even so, I don't see that we'll have a circle of friends who are also friends with one another. I am SO lucky to have wonderful interesting people around me, that's for sure. I can't complain, but still, I wish my friends and I wish my Jessica and her family were closer; close enough for a quick anytime drop-by. Close enough to share my chicken soup and lettuce from our garden or to drop off our puppy for a dog-sit. In other words, close enough to be spontaneous.
I'd love to hear about your friends and about your thoughts on friendships....