Instead I want to tell you about this amazing novel I discovered this weekend.
It's called The Girls From Ames and it's by journalist Jeffrey Zaslow. This book tells the story of a forty year friendship between eleven women. The women (or "girls") are from Ames, Iowa which is the home of my alma mater, Iowa State University. They all met as children and to this day are still close friends although they are now into their mid-forties.
The book was given to a good friend of mine for her birthday, and after hearing about it I knew I had to go buy it. I bought it Saturday morning and am already almost halfway through it.
On several levels these girls remind me of my own circle of girlfriends, but on several other levels it reminds me of how different we are from these women. I can only hope that our bond withstands all of the struggles we are going through, like the girls from the book, but sometimes it's hard to be optimistic.
From what I have read so far it seems that the girls struggled the most through their twenties. During this time they are figuring out who they are, what they want and where they are going. This is the time where we, as women, are most selfish and put ourselves first. Maybe because we know that this may be the only time in our lives to do so, being as after marriage and children your own personal well-being isn't the most important thing in your life anymore.
Regardless, during this selfish phase we call our twenties the relationships with our close girlfriends tend to suffer. Hurtful words are thrown and unconditional love is taken for granted.
It's difficult moving down the totem people on the level of importance you are to someone else. Being replaced with husbands and children can be heartbreaking and confusing, but so far this book is teaching me that we're not being replaced in our girlfriends eyes. We still fill a place in their lives that can only be filled by the women in your life called your friends.
I am the youngest of my group of friends, and many times it is very evident. I'm not ready to give up our carefree ways and I'm definitely not ready to take a step down. This book has come along at the perfect time for me.