Tuesday, April 20, 2010

The need to belong

Today I have had a very contemplative day.  So with that said... today will be a Thoughtful Tuesday! 

We as women feel the constant need to belong, men might feel that need; however since I have never been a man I cant speak for them!  As young girls we thrive when we have friends, we blossom when we around others that are like us... on the school yard there are the double dutch girls, the hopscotch girls, the horse girls, the tag girls and the girly girls.  For some of us girls, we were visited by "Aunt Flow" at an early age and then comes the desire to be around others that understand that whole stage in life - the bras, the pads and such.  Then junior and senior high school is all about belonging, you are either in the "in" crowd or not. 
After high school, especially in the church world that I grew up in, there is the married young girls and then what feels like the "ole spinster" girls.  There is also the girls that go to college and the girls that go straight to working.  For those that don't really fit into any of those categories there is the lonely realization that you are all by yourself.  Once you "join" one of those groups your friends from the other groups are no longer in your circle and you find it hard to relate and continue a friendship. 
After passing the awkward post high school years of trying to figure out who you are as a woman, no longer a girl there continues to be groups and the in or not.  For those that are married there is the married but no children, yet group.  The seriously dating the same guy but no ring, yet group.  There is the married and one child, thinking or more group.  The frustrated single, wishing they were dating/married group.  You get the point... right?
I am feeling like I don't quite belong to any group right now... somewhat in limbo!  I am married, younger, and have young children.
I feel like there are a few people that I can be on the same page with, or same group, if you will.  Being that I have a husband that works a lot and two young boys that are a bit of a handful, my friends or groups have to be understanding of that.  Which means that I have to always do things with my children, thus cutting down on the actual one on one time that I might get to talk with someone that is in the same boat as me. 
A lot of these contemplative thoughts have come from my needing to find out where and what I am going to put my energy into to try and fulfill my need to belong.  I have spent the last few days working on Mothers & More stuff and have left the days feeling more spent than fulfilled.  Does that mean that, that group is not where I belong?  I am tending to think so as most of the woman have older children and too are older themselves. 
Why do things have to be so complicated?  I know that if Michael were to read this or listen to me talk this out, he would simply say, "It doesn't have to be complicated... you think through things too much."  There is a part of me that would agree with that, however being the woman that I am and desiring to belong keeps me plugging along at a variety of things, trying to find the place that fits me the best.  Notice I did not say, fits me like a glove... that being because I know that the sense of belonging and the need to be fulfilled will change and not always be the same for the rest of my life.  I just need to find a place that fits me for the season that I am in. 
So I guess the basics of this is as a woman I know that I need to feel like I belong with another group of women, I need to be fulfilled within that group... whatever that might be, there are days I am not sure what will fulfill me as a woman, but I think feeling like I can give and receive freely and feel like the amount that I give (time, talents, gifts) is then also received by me.