Dear Friends I Never See: Yes, I Appreciate the Hell Outta You. No, I Don’t Want to Go Out

Aren’t friends just the best? 

There for you when you need them, always ready with a tissue or a glass of wine or a ride to the airport or a well timed insult about your ex’s new girlfriend. 

I’m fortunate enough to have a lot of people in my life whom I consider to be good friends.  Some are old, some are new, some are borrowed, some are…wait, no, I got carried away there…

Anyway, you get the gist. 

I love my friends, I truly do. And whenever I see them we have a great time and I never walk away saying “I wish I didn’t see those people!”

But here’s the thing, as much as I enjoy going out with friends when I have the chance…I would pick staying home and watching a Friday night movie with my husband and kids 99% of the time. 

This isn’t a reflection on my friends. It’s a reflection of where I am in my life right now. It’s also a reflection on how much I love being in sweatpants with no make-up on but that’s a conversation for another day.

You see, right now my sons are 10 and 11. We’re in the sweet spot where we can watch cooler movies with them, and play bigger kid games, and let them stay up a little later so we can finish a puzzle. We’re past candy land and Sesame Street but we’re not yet on to spending weekend nights at the mall with friends. We’re at family game nights and ice cream sundae parties and I love it here. 

And no, we don’t spend every weekend night home together. My husband and I go out with other adults. We go to parties and weddings and concerts and out for dinner. The kids have sleepovers and plans outside of our house. I’m not saying nights at home are a must, but right now they are a choice. 

So when my girlfriends try to plan a night out I often find myself wanting to go while at the same time feeling sad about missed opportunities at home. Sometimes I throw on my favorite pair of heels and head out. Sometimes I don’t. 

And if I don’t join in, I just want my friends to know that it’s not because I don’t love spending time with you because I really, really do. It’s just a choice I’m making right now. A choice to be happy and content with the way things are when I’m simply relaxing at home with my family. It won’t always be like this. God knows the boys are going to be out on their own in no time and then maybe I’ll be the one looking to make plans all the time. And maybe, friends, your circumstances will have changed and you’ll be the ones who find yourselves saying no to more and more invitations.

And that’s ok. Because I get it. And I still love you.

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