I don’t normally use names in my stories. But today I want no one out there to be guessing who I might be referring to. I am raising a glass in gratitude to these ladies.
You may not know — but yesterday was my birthday. It was not one of those birthdays that end in a zero or anything overly remarkable which would call for the entire world to pause and acknowledge the change in leading digit. However, my friends — my three best friends — made sure I felt loved and cared for and celebrated.
There were dinners and drinks and gifts. Fun gifts, beautiful gifts, delicate gifts and the most precious gift of all — their time. I am humbled by their generosity.
If you are anything like me — your Inner Critic is on a constant replay loop in your brain reminding you of— all the times you’ve messed up in your life. All the reasons why you are an unworthy piece of shit. All the mistakes you’ve made. All the missteps you’ve taken. So — to have three people — three really amazing women whom you love and respect so very much — come forward with such enthusiasm on your birthday and embrace you is beyond comprehension.
The most priceless gift I was given this weekend — I can turn to my Inner Critic and tell her to shut the fuck up. Because look — I am loved, and loved well by these humans. And they are no fools.
That’s what women do for each other, isn’t it? You see it all the time. Women build communities for support. And we stand by each other. Men may come and go, or they may stay for decades. But there will always be a tribe for women. Even after the days of raising our children are over, we will find our people and bond. We are pack animals. We need each other in a way that is foreign to the male of the species.
The advice I always give young women — find your tribe. Or build one. One day your husband may not be there. Sometimes through no fault of his own. Divorce, disease, widowhood — you do not know the journey you are meant for. But other women, other women will walk that trail with you till the end.