• Friendship / Inspiration / Lifestyle

    I Need You More Than You Probably Need Me

    Late this afternoon, a friend of mine randomly called me and asked if we wanted to come over for an impromptu swim and BBQ dinner. I was kind of caught off guard and I won’t lie, the very first thought through my mind was “Ugh…do I have the energy to get all our stuff packed up and the kids into the van and head out of the house?” But that lasted all of three seconds and then sheer excitement kicked in and I replied with an exuberant “YES! We will come! And I’ll bring corn!”

    We made our way there, splashed around in the pool, ate some delicious barbecued burgers and then enjoyed a nice family hangout in the playroom, while all SIX of our children played together (our kids are all the same age: girls are the oldest and going into senior kindergarten, middle boys are starting school in a few weeks and both our baby boys were born in the same year, just months apart!)

    Pool time Donut floatie

    We truly had an amazing night with our friends and I left with my heart feeling so full. Our girls made friendship necklaces and bracelets and my daughter was in tears on the way home, crying “Mom! My necklace doesn’t have enough friendship on it!” True story. It not only fills my heart to make new adult friends, but even more so, to watch my children establish these beautiful friendships, early on in their lives, that I pray will last for years and years to come.

    You see, our story is a little different than most. While I had the opportunity to grow up in the exact same home, community, church, etc., until I moved out for college, as a married couple and now family, we have not had that same experience. In 10 years of marriage, we have moved seven times into four brand new communities. For any of you statisticians out there, that’s a lot of moving. A lot of adjusting to a new place. A lot of making new friends and setting down new roots.

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    When I was younger, growing up in Ottawa, part of that same community, same church, same group of friends, etc., I often dreamt of a life like I’ve had the last 10 years. One where you could just pick up and start again. Where you could be free to grow and change and come into your own as a person, without people’s expectations being placed on you. And that’s exactly why I moved across the country at 17 years old…to go to school, to start afresh and to rediscover myself.

    Now though, 15 years later, a husband and three kids in tow, I find myself longing for that sense of deep familiarity. I dream of the day where my family and best friends all live within a 15 minute drive (not a 12 hour drive or even a plane ride away). We don’t have the luxury of having family just around the corner or our best friends from high school in the town next door, where our kids will grow up together and become besties too. 

    As we’ve moved into all these new communities, we’ve had to start from scratch. Most of the times, we’ve known nobody. We’ve only had each other. And so we’ve had to put ourselves out there, time and time again, in order to establish new friendships. Most people at our age aren’t really “starting over” when it comes to friends. They are continuing to cultivate the ones they’ve long established. I realize we are somewhat unique to this lifestyle (and by no means am I complaining, at all, just simply sharing what it’s like). I love our lives. I love what we do. I love the places we’ve been, the people we’ve met. The good times and the hard times…they’ve shaped us into who we are as individuals, as a couple and as a family.

    [pullquote width=”250″ float=”left”]You don’t really “need” another friend, another family in your life. Another set of birthday parties to attend or more people to invite to yours. But I need that. My kids need that. We need you.[/pullquote]

    But with saying that, I’m also saying that it’s likely that I need you more than you need me in your life. I need your friendship because you are likely one of the few friends I have in my physical, everyday, going-to-the-splash-pad, helping-out-when-a-kid-is-in-the-hospital, life. I can’t call my mom and she will be right over when one of my kids cuts his finger open and needs stitches immediately. I don’t have many people I can rely on to babysit in a pinch or even whip over to pick up my kids from school because I’m running late from a meeting. That just isn’t my life. And I’m ok with that. I’ve learned how to adapt to that lifestyle.

    But I need you more than you need me because you likely have your family and your close group of friends all around you. You don’t really “need” another friend, another family in your life. Another set of birthday parties to attend or more people to invite to yours. But I need that. My kids need that. We need you. I would love to be able to fill our parties with all of our family, but we simply can’t. So we rely on you…our friends…to become our “family” and celebrate life’s greatest moments together!

    JimenezMartin

    Don’t get me wrong, I have lots of friends. I love my friends, I cherish and value my friendships so much that I think about my friends constantly (more than any of them will ever know). I wish I had all the money in the world sometimes so I could send them all lavish gifts every time I thought about them, or better yet, fly to surprise them!

    But in the here and now, I need my friends. I need a family. I need a village to be established around us, where our lives become intertwined and our kids grow up together. Where my kids respect my friends as significant mentors and influencers in their lives because of time we’ve all spent together.

    Tonight, I go to bed with a grateful heart, knowing that when my friend called today, she was truly an answer to my prayer of “Lord, strengthen some of these friendships where they start to become like family.” Doesn’t matter if the house is clean, doesn’t matter if we eat yesterday’s leftovers and really doesn’t matter if you’ve had time to wash your hair. All that matters is that we live and breath and fellowship together. That we “do life” together. Life is better when lived together, as a community, as friends, as family. As Ecclesiates 4:9-10 puts it, “Two people are better off than one, for they can help each other succeed. If one person falls, the other can reach out and help. But someone who falls alone is in real trouble.”

    What about you? Do you have friends in your life that are new to town? That don’t have any family around? Have you “adopted” a family of friends into your own family? I encourage you to seek out people in your community: either neighbors or new comers to church, and get to know them. Invite them over for last minute dinners, include them in your family celebrations and begin to walk life with them. They most likely need it more than you do, but I guarantee that you are blessed in return for loving on that family!

    Love & Blessings,

    CMartin-Sign

     

     

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    44 Comments

  • Reply Kathy August 18, 2015 at 9:27 am

    🙂 sweet post and thanks for sharing a glimpse into what your relationships mean to you. And I think that it’s good to let other people know that it’s okay to need each other. I feel like too many people think that is a weakness. I think that we are strong together. Love the verse you quoted. It’s perfect.

    • Reply Christine August 25, 2015 at 4:58 pm

      Thanks, dear friend! Love you and cherish our friendship! xox

  • Reply Crazy shenanigans August 18, 2015 at 9:30 am

    Hopefully you won’t have to move again and you can really enjoy the place your in. It sounds like a wonderful group of people live there.

    • Reply Christine August 25, 2015 at 4:58 pm

      Absolutely! That is our hope and prayer! xox

  • Reply Roxanne August 18, 2015 at 9:34 am

    Great post, we all crave familiarity. However, I’m sure your kids are learning a lot of invaluable life skills with all of the moves!

    • Reply Christine August 25, 2015 at 4:59 pm

      Absolutely! They have transitioned so well everywhere we’ve gone! I’m so grateful for that! xox

  • Reply Holly Housewife August 18, 2015 at 9:55 am

    I can 100% relate!
    We are always the new people in town and as soon as we get comfy, we are up and transferred again.
    It’s not ideal but it works and the friends we’ve met are an amazing reason to keep up this lifestyle 🙂

    • Reply Christine August 25, 2015 at 5:21 pm

      And aren’t you moving again soon? I thought I saw that somewhere…What does your hubby do for a job?

  • Reply Aubrey August 18, 2015 at 10:02 am

    Growing up we were very often the new family in the neighborhood. Luckily eastern North Carolina is very warm and friendly, and I was always very involved in extra curriculars, but it’s definitely hard. I recently moved, and even though I have a lot of friends within 20 minutes, if I needed a cup of sugar I wouldn’t know who to call.

    • Reply Christine August 25, 2015 at 5:32 pm

      I hear ya with the cup of sugar! I pray you find that sugar soon 😉

  • Reply Jaclyn August 18, 2015 at 10:14 am

    We’ve moved around a lot during my childhood AND now in adulthood. I love this message and definitely relate to it. We had some new friends in town and they’ve grown to be some of our favorites! 🙂

    • Reply Christine August 25, 2015 at 5:31 pm

      I’m so glad to hear that you’ve found those people! SO important! xox

  • Reply Jess Beer August 18, 2015 at 10:17 am

    Even living fairly close to where I grew up, I relate to so much of this because my circumstances are different – I’m a working mom in an 8-5, and so many of the people I grew up with are in different walks of life. We need the support around us for our individual lifestyles. It is true that you need that village, and it’s so hard to establish.

    • Reply Christine August 25, 2015 at 5:30 pm

      Absolutely need that village. It’s a lifeline! xox

  • Reply Amanda @Blissful Gal August 18, 2015 at 10:50 am

    Starting somewhere new is a nerve-racking experience for me too. I find that just putting myself out there and trying to meet new people really helps me!

    • Reply Christine August 25, 2015 at 5:16 pm

      Absolutely! And that’s exactly how I’ve made my friends too is by putting myself out there! xox

  • Reply Sara Strand August 18, 2015 at 11:08 am

    We moved a lot when I was younger as well so I never really formed any attachments or tried to make friends until high school. Which, by then, everyone has their own group and really don’t want to bring in another new person. So as an adult, I want so badly to be that neighbor that has block parties or gets invited to block parties and nope. I wave and say hello but I never engage. And I hate that.

    • Reply Christine August 25, 2015 at 5:28 pm

      I want block parties too! Too bad we don’t live in the same neighborhood 😉

  • Reply jessica August 18, 2015 at 11:17 am

    this was a great post and good reminder that we all need friends. Unfortunately, I was an army brat and we moved all the time so my childhood is kind of a blur but the older I get the more I realize the true meaning of friendship and how to value it more.

    • Reply Christine August 25, 2015 at 5:27 pm

      Absolutely! We do all needs friends and even though they might be far, we have to cherish them! xox

  • Reply Emily, Our house now a home August 18, 2015 at 11:44 am

    I love this! I am the same way as you. I grew up in the same town, we moved a lot but it was always in the same area. I went to the same schools with the same people. When I was 18 I moved cross country. My husband and I have stayed in one home since having our kids but we had to start over too. It is hard to do but so important for me and my kids. I need friendships and people, I adore that part of life so much. I am glad you had fun. Also, can I have a friend with a pool who invites me over and feeds me? 🙂

    • Reply Christine August 25, 2015 at 5:26 pm

      haha…right?! Friends are life to me and so that’s why I value them so much! xox

  • Reply Ashley August 18, 2015 at 12:03 pm

    YES! I love this so much. This last year, after a recent move, I learned just how valuable this form of community is. And intentionally going after it, creating it, has been truly life changing. Beautiful view on community. 💛

    • Reply Christine August 25, 2015 at 5:25 pm

      That’s the key is being intentional! Thanks Ashley! xox

  • Reply Maegan Dockery August 18, 2015 at 1:04 pm

    Oh, how I needed this today. My husband and I just moved two weeks ago so he could follow God’s call on his life to attend seminary. I’m used to being close to friends and family and it has been so tough adjusting here. Thank you for these well-timed words!

    • Reply Christine August 25, 2015 at 5:24 pm

      Awe, I’m so glad to hear that this encouraged you! Praying you guys find those close friends that become family! xox

  • Reply Candia August 18, 2015 at 1:31 pm

    This was very empowering! I’m moving to a new town soon and its quite nerve racking. Thanks so much for posting this.

    • Reply Christine August 25, 2015 at 5:23 pm

      My pleasure Candia! All the best with the new move! xox

  • Reply Brittany Bergman August 18, 2015 at 1:32 pm

    This sounds a lot like my childhood — I think we moved more than a dozen times while I was growing up. It was hard as a kid, but it’s not until now that I’ve thought about the impact that must have had on my parents. Right now, Dan and I are the new(ish) neighbors and we really want to work on building community in our new neighborhood. Lots of the homes near us are for sale, so I hope with so many new folks, we’ll all bond quickly!

    • Reply Christine August 25, 2015 at 5:23 pm

      That’s like us now with the kids…we want them to have a place that’s “home” so we plan on being here for awhile! xox

  • Reply Stephanie August 18, 2015 at 6:16 pm

    I need YOU….. And you moved!😔 Miss you my friend!

    • Reply Christine August 25, 2015 at 5:15 pm

      Awe! That is SO sweet, my friend! Miss you! Come and visit anytime! xox

  • Reply Lindsay August 18, 2015 at 7:29 pm

    I’m so blessed to have my mom and step dad about five minute drive from us. We don’t have many friends; many have passed away or we’ve drifted apart from… I’ve longed to have a best friend for years, other than my husband…. Sometimes you need that girlfriends ear or shoulder to lean on. That’s why I love this blogging community. I don’t feel so alone.

    What a great day yesterday to spend with the kids and your girlfriend by the pool – holy Hannah it was hot yesterday.

    • Reply Christine August 25, 2015 at 5:01 pm

      You are right, we so need those girlfriends in our lives. And I agree, the blogging community has been fantastic for making friends! xox

  • Reply Andrea August 18, 2015 at 8:33 pm

    Your post really resonated to me. My parents were both military children, and moved around a lot. My mom knew she wanted my sister and I to have a community growing up. We thankfully still do. I still am friends with most of my middle school friends (over 20 years) and they are everything to me. I did end up moving to the US, which is a 13+ hour long trip with airfare away though.. I value community like no other. And I understand the first 3 seconds of “ugh, this is not practical”. But like you, I know that once we’re there, everything is worth it. Great post!

    • Reply Christine August 25, 2015 at 5:02 pm

      Thanks Andrea! Absolutely worth it, eh?! xox

  • Reply Joscelyn | Wifemamafoodie August 18, 2015 at 10:54 pm

    Yes, I totally relate, Christine. My little family and I made a cross-country move a year and a half ago for my husband’s new job more than a 20 hour drive away. I’m a stay at home mom and my children are homeschooled, which made it even more difficult to make friends. I remember my kids sometimes crying at bedtime because they hadn’t been able to make any friends. It just broke my heart. They’ve been able to meet people here and there, but it is hard to be the new kid on the block, in an established community where everyone already has their group of friends. It’s nice to hear I’m not the only one with these struggles! Thank you for being real!

    • Reply Christine August 25, 2015 at 5:04 pm

      Awe, I’m sorry to hear that. It is so hard, I can imagine even harder with being homeschooled. Praying you guys find that community! xox

  • Reply Erin H August 19, 2015 at 12:20 pm

    So beautiful Christine. I can relate to this as a child and adult! We moved several times when I was young and I always had to make new friends/new communities/new church etc. Now as an adult I am about to embark on a brand new city with my husband where we basically know no one and need to find a new church etc. It’s scary and exciting at the same time…I miss all my dear friends (LIKE YOU!) who are close yet still far away in terms of day to day life plans. Miss you lots my dear and hopefully we can get together before the year is over!! LOL xoxox <3

    • Reply Christine August 25, 2015 at 5:05 pm

      Awe! We miss you too lovely! Praying you guys find such a beautiful community of people who surround you both as you begin again! xox

  • Reply Jennifer August 21, 2015 at 11:17 pm

    Holy cow. I loved this. My husband is a pastor and we have made several of those moves in our 13 years together. And it felt like this – Every.Single.Time. Other than a short 5 month time where we lived in my parent’s spare bedroom, my kids have never had grandparents around the corner. My closest friends I grew up with are scattered across the country. In each and every place we have lived, it took time, but we got there where we had a few who became our family. Praise God he has given me community here with our local homeschool group. Bonus moms for my kids, friends who have become family, best pals for my kids, and a group of pastors who are great friends to my husband. Thank you for putting into words what my heart has felt but never been bold enough to say out loud.

    • Reply Christine August 25, 2015 at 5:10 pm

      Awe! I’m so glad to hear you have found that special community! It’s so incredibly important! xox

  • Reply Julie August 22, 2015 at 10:09 am

    This is a great reminder for those of us who aren’t new. I’ve been in the same neighborhood for 15 years and sometimes forget to reach out to the new friends. Thank you.

    • Reply Christine August 25, 2015 at 5:10 pm

      Awe, well I’m glad to hear that. I’m sure there is someone around who needs ya! xox

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