I am madly in love with my husband. End of story. Period.
But it's not the end of story. I used to think this meant that I would never need to find another soul to talk to, laugh with, and confide in. However, because I DO love my husband and want to continue to have a healthy and happy relationship with him, I have come to the conclusion that A GIRL NEEDS GIRLFRIENDS. PERIOD.
Here are the reasons why.
1. Sometimes the truth hurts, but it hurts a whole lot less when it's coming from a girlfriend. If I was to purchase a new outfit and excitedly model it in front of my husband, I wouldn't want to hear that although my new aztec-patterned harem pants look pretty darn hot on the size 0 teenage model, on me the effect is a bit different, and I look as wide as the state of Texas. In fact, if he came out with that statement, I would probably have a mini tantrum and pout the rest of the evening, despite the fact that he had told me the truth and saved me the embarrassment of wearing it in public. My girlfriend, however, is a different story. Not only would she tell me the sad truth of my outfit's atrocity, which I would accept without question, but she would help me figure out a way to repurpose the fabric to make fabulous matching infinity scarves for me and my girls.
2. You can diet together. Or not. Let's face it, going on a diet is tough business. We all know that it's easier to face that challenge with a few companions to share the misery with. Girlfriends are perfect for that. Not only are they great as encouragement to resist temptations and cajole you into meeting them at the gym for that impossible spin class, but they are also perfectly skilled at reasoning and letting you eat that donut "because you earned it."
3. No one wants your man sitting through the latest chick flick, including your man. Even though you get to see the movie you want, it gets annoying and down-right infuriating to have to listen to him snicker and guffaw through all the best, sappiest lines in the movie, or even worse, have to translate the dialog of the period drama you have been waiting all year to see, because he insists that he cannot understand their British accents. It is much more enjoyable to cry, sigh, and laugh with a girlfriend who is coming from the same girl-zone as you are. Really, it's a win-win situation. You get to enjoy the movie and have fun with your friends, your man can sit home and watch the football game with a plate of nachos and sour cream, and you come home all ready to exhibit your romantic feelings for his stoic selflessness in encouraging you to hang with the girls for the night. This handy rule also applies to Broadway productions, symphony performances, operatic overtures, and modern dance theatrics.
4. Girlfriends are supreme sympathizers. The other day I was having a rough day at work. I was feeling sorry for myself because I only had a few minutes for my lunch break and my hands were fatigued and bothering me. I texted my husband to tell him my woes. His response: "Stop texting then." Men are good at solving problems. They pride themselves in being able to reassemble, reorganize, or rethink any problem that you throw their way. Unfortunately, as women, we don't usually want our problem fixed. It may even be unfixable. All we really want is someone to listen. Enter The Girlfriend. Girlfriends know how to listen. They know how to reaffirm that your feelings of frustration/fear/annoyance/worry/anger/embarrassment are valid and understandable. They would feel the exact same way. They would have done the exact same thing. And then they tell you a ridiculous story about when they made a fool of themselves in a situation which has no connection whatsoever to the incident you originally called about, which makes you laugh. Problem not solved, but you sure feel a whole lot better.
5. She knows you inside and out, and loves you anyway. It isn't always right away. Frequently we hide the parts we don't want anyone to know or see for as long as possible, but if your girlfriends are sticking around by your side for any substantial period of time, at some point they are going to see the real you. And I'm not just talking about the make-up free, ponies and grubbies kind of days. They are going to see you in crisis. They are going to see you in pure, hysterical joy. They are going to see you in all your fuming, exasperated glory at some point. It's only a matter of time. That's the true test of friendship right there. If they not only can tolerate your crazy moods and hair-brained ideas, but also join you and add their own version of silliness to the mix, you know that you have the genuine thing. We all need someone who can love us, understand us, and lift us up when we need the boost. Who better to do that than someone who has the same hormonally charged cycles as you do?
Girls Get It. Period. (Pun only slightly intended...)
I have been blessed with so many wonderful women in my life. Girlfriends have helped me through some of the most trying times that I have ever faced. I have had days where I felt all alone in the world, swallowed up in my grief or despair, only to be lifted up and delighted by a perfectly timed phone call from a dear friend, reminding me that not only am I NOT alone, but I am surrounded by love, acceptance, and understanding. That, in the end, is what it's all about.
So, who's up for a Girls' Night Out?
My name is Heather.
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