I recently had a photoshoot with a world-class photographer: Katie Thering, from Katie Thering Photography & Design.  What is so wonderful about Katie is not only her amazing eye and ability to make me look good in my pictures but the fact that I get to call her a friend.   

We met in college and lived together for three years. Then life took us in different directions. I can remember thinking how easy it was to like her when we first met. Over the last year or so, we have been able to see each other more and more. Each time, we recognize how much energy we get from each other, how easy it has been to reconnect. 

Because of that, this last photoshoot had me thinking and realizing the power of good, wholesome friendships, as well as my need to have those people in my life regularly.

Quality Over Quantity: The Fact I Get To Call Her A Friend

You may be wondering, “What is the point? Why is she telling me this?”

Well here is the thing — in the world of social media, we have notched up the comparison thing to the nth degree.  Words like “Tribe” and “Besties” are thrown around like badges of honor.  And I too have fallen into the trap of wishing I had that or wanting to be included. But the reality is that I am a woman of few truly close friends.  You know, the friends that you can be vulnerable with, and they truly want to hear it. They get to see the ugly and love you despite it.

Sure, I have a lot of friendly acquaintances, and we may even hang out and have a good time, but they don’t know me.  I am fairly certain they wouldn’t know that I have this part of me that watches in envy from afar and wishes I had a “friend” group like so many I see on Facebook, but then again realizes, NO, I don’t want that. 

While I can move through a crowd at a party, talk to everyone there, and have a lot of fun, in the end, I prefer small gatherings.  I like to go deep and have intimate, transformative conversations.  And I need to remember that that’s okay.  It’s just another area I compare myself in and need to realize that my desire to be included is just something I sensationalize in my head. 

You may ask, “Well don’t you want friends?”  And yes, I want friends, and I do have those people that I can count on.  What I need to realize is that it’s not a competition.  There is no right way to “friend.”  I also need to realize that at this stage in my life, with all that my kids have going on, I certainly can’t handle more. I recognize the way I want to “friend” takes time and attention, of which I don’t have much extra to go around.  

For those of you reading this out there, you may have a large tribe, you may have a small tribe.  The idea isn’t to keep up with what you think is right, but rather to own what you truly desire!  And please, please make sure you are FILLED UP by them!

If you are struggling with comparison-itis or feeling left out…let’s talk

P.S. All my pictures on my website, on Instagram and Facebook, have been shot my Katie (ok, except the few that I have taken on my iPhone, but you will be able to tell).  If you like them, I know you will like her.  Check her out at Katie Thering Photography

P.P.S.  For all my other close friends out there, you know who you are…I am sending you virtual hugs!