Some are hard. Some come easy. Some end. Some grow.
As I’m getting older I am learning the importance of quality over quantity in this area. That may seem like common sense, but honestly, relationship building takes time and sometimes I just don’t want to devote time to it. Certain relationships you need to (ie spouse, children, family) take the time to build on them, help them evolve, and maybe put healthy boundaries in place. The others (ie friendships or outside the box: body image, food, social media) take up brain space and energy I don’t always have to give.
Let’s take a step back. Why am I even talking about this? I just went to conference that spoke on community and the importance of community and building on that community. An interchangeable word I believe for community is relationship. That's what your community is, people around you that you build relationships with that hopefully fuel your life and you fuel theirs. Having gone through some changes this past year or so (having Neiko) I am learning the importance of having a community of moms around me. Even more so, like minded moms. Having other friendships are also important, don’t get me wrong, because surrounding yourself with people who can speak truth to you in all situations is very important. Learning that we continually need to be expanding our community got me thinking. Am I doing this? And honestly how much time am I spending on this?
With my new role of being a mom I noticeable saw a shift in my relationships. I was drawn to other moms. Moms who have children currently my child's age and moms who have older children. I didn’t consciously do this either, it just naturally happened. First I had to get out of my home bubble, which was a struggle itself, then I saw this. (And lots of thanks to the friends who helped me do this, who reached out and started this new network of friendships I needed and didn’t even know.) I was being drawn to moms who are similar to my way of thinking. Meaning a little bit more holistic and open about speaking and sharing within our families (the definition of family here is that immediate mom, dad, and child[ren] one). Seeking out these type of relationships will help me develop as a mom and wife. These are the ones I want to devote time to.
Please don’t get me wrong friends reading this who aren’t in that category, I’m not done yet.
I am still the person that began those friendships before becoming a wife or mom and I don’t want to lose them. I just don’t have a lot of extra time these days to devote to these relationships. That doesn’t not mean I won’t. I am learning to balance my life (which I think will be an ongoing learning type of thing). I genuinely appreciate these people and still get fueled by them, but as life evolves so will these relationships.
Learning about evolving a relationship is important. Circumstances change and some of these friendships are going to end. Some may take a break and pick up, as if time hadn’t passed, in the future. Others are going to have healthy boundaries put on them because that is what is necessary to help the relationship continue.
Okay, now those outside the box relationships: body image, food, social media, etc. Some of these are maybe things you didn’t perhaps think of in a relationship sort of lens, but they are. They too evolve, grow, end, and need boundaries put on them. These are areas in my life I have and still struggle with. Being a mom, the before and after baby body. With food, eating it and having a healthy relationship is something I strive to do each day. Social media, not letting it impact me the way it does sometimes but rather using it as a motivational tool it is meant to be. Facing these relationships can sometimes be tougher than we think. Owning up to them, stopping those bad thoughts we may have towards them, and letting healthy new perspectives grow, is important. I’ll let you know any tips and tricks I learn as time goes on in these areas.
The most important relationship I need to really focus more time on is my relationship with my Heavenly Father. I honestly struggle with this. It again is one that takes time and devotion. I know there is no guilt in this relationship, but when I fall short I tend to recoil away even further. When instead I need to dive in closer. He will help me with all the above relationships if only I work on mine with him first. This relationship should be my point of reference for all the others.
Maybe that is something you needed to be reminded of today. It surely was once I wrote it. Because, in all honesty, I didn’t even see that coming as I began writing this. Crazy right. Usually one would have a plan for writing, I did but my relationship with God wasn’t even on my mind until the words starting coming out. Talk about convicting.
As we continue to develop our communities, develop our relationships (I think I just won the award for how many times one writes relationship haha), and lean not on our own understanding, we will see change happen. Hopefully good change that will benefit in your life. Change towards healthier relationships that grow you as a person. It is a learning process that we need to be open too. I am doing it alongside you, because if you are reading this, you are someone I care about and appreciate in my life. I wish all the best in the area of relationships for you and that you have a community around you that supports you and lifts you up.
Thank you again for reading this and partaking in my journey of life. Until the next idea pops into my head...