“Girls just wanna have fun..” Thank you Cyndi Lauper for a great song. As a wife and mom of two boys, I often find myself hungry, hungry for estrogen. I know you thought I meant food or more specifically, chocolate. While it’s true my desire for yummy food know no bounds, this is a hunger for relationship, laughter, kindred spirits, honesty, and connectedness. As much as I love my husband and wouldn’t trade him for anything, he can’t be everything or the only thing in my life.
The problem is that I’m not good at making time for girlfriends. It is hard to squeeze it in around work, house, kids and hubby. Recently, a friend had planned a girls get together. Notice, someone else planned it. I was so looking forward to it. My husband was even willing to manage a sleepover for my son (3 additional teenage boys), so I could go be with the girls. He must have sensed I needed it. He is much better at getting his guy time. It turned out that waiting one more week would work better for everyone. I was so hungry for girl time that my heart ached to have to wait one more week. This got me wondering, “Why is this so important?”
My mother at 85 years young still gets together with her girlfriends regularly and attends a monthly church women’s group. She has always been apart of these groups. I know they were key in helping her navigate through the loss of Dad all those years ago. They have helped her thrive on her own. With such a great role model, one would think I would be better at this. We also have biblical models. We have Mary, mother of Jesus, going to her cousin, Elizabeth, We have Ruth and Naomi and many other examples of women doing life together, supporting each other. This scripture from 1 Samuel is exactly how I feel about my closest friends. This is probably why my heart aches to see them.
“The soul of Jonathan was knit to the soul of David, and Jonathan loved him as his own soul”. 1 Samuel 18:1(ESV).
God not only gave us biblical examples of friendship and their importance, He also gave us a physical response to our besties. Studies have shown that experiencing something difficult with a close friends lowers cortisol, the stress hormone that is magnified when we are stressed. For women there is an added benefit. A University of Michigan study showed that women being together raises progesterone (2009). Ever since I crossed the 40 mark, that has become a hot commodity in my life. No wonder I feel better after time with the girls, and no wonder I’m hungry for more. We are meant to do life together. Scripture and science prove it.
How are your friendships? Are you nurturing them? Do you need to put it on your “to do” list? How do you stay connected? Share your tips here, and we can encourage each other.