This past February, I had the pleasure of embarking on my very first Ladies Weekend with two of my best friends. Since they had both left New York City for more suburban pastures, we needed a good excuse to all get together again for more than just a passing dinner or happy hour when they swing through town.
I’m not sure when along the way we decided it would become an annual tradition, but now I don’t know what I would do without it. Here are our plans for the next few years:
2016: Orlando, FL
New Orleans, LA Las Vegas, NV Miami, FL
2018: California Road Trip
2019: Caribbean Cruise
So, why ARE these Ladies Weekends so important to me all of a sudden? I think there are a few reasons.
(1) Making friends is hard.
The older and wiser you get, the more challenging it is to find people who you are willing to sacrifice your time for. As a full-time working (outside the home) mom of a preschooler, there is very little that sounds more appealing to me after dinner than just sitting on the couch and indulging in a little frivolous television before heading to bed at a reasonable hour.
I know; the mom life is thrilling.
At the same time, as any married woman can attest to, there are some days you just need a few hours with anyone other than your spouse and kids. You just do. So, who can you turn to?
I’ve only been at my current job for a few months, and haven’t really made any friends with outside-of-work potential. I have a handful of friends from church with equally demanding schedules, and that’s about it.
Maybe it’s the same anywhere, but it feels like especially in NYC, making/maintaining friendships is harder than dating – mainly because it feels even more awkward to ask a girl that seems cool if she’d like to “hang out.”
What if she’s not cool?
What if she thinks I’m weird?
What will we talk about?
It’s a real battle for the introvert in me!
Parents Husbands just don’t understand.
I love my husband, and I’m lucky because he’s such a good one. But, well, he’s still a boy.
I have a really good friend who I lived with for a while in Orlando, and he would get so annoyed when our group of girls would declare that we were having a girls night.
At the time, I thought it was cool to say, “You know what? You’re right! Let’s all hang out! La di da!”
But you know what? I was wrong. As much as I’m all for equality among men and women, we’re just different. After spending 95% of my free time with my husband, our son, and my dog (who’s also a boy), I just need a little shot of estrogen. And as stereotypical as it sounds, often that means frou-frou cocktails, chick flicks, and dancing around to the poppiest of pop music.
(3) It helps keep you, YOU.
All too often women are relegated to the titles of wife and mom. Those are great things to be, and while I’m proud to be them, I’m so much more.
My time with my friends gives me a chance to reconnect with the rest of me – the woman who likes to get fancy sometimes, the one who likes mimosas at any time of the day, the lady who enjoys dancing and reading and shopping and swimming and SO. MANY. THINGS.
Sometimes a little lack of responsibility is in order! Plus, perspective from some honest and loving friends can help get things back on track in other areas of life.
And then, after a nice relaxing weekend of doing whatever the heck I want for a change, I can happily get back to wife and mom-ing it up.
All that said, I cannot wait for Ladies Weekend 2017! Miami better start getting ready because we have a year’s worth of shenanigans to fit into three short days.