Friend-less? Not Me
friend-less? not me (a storytime)
Category: Girl Talk
Read Time: 8 minutes
I am literally beaming from ear to ear right now staring at this laptop absolutely amazed. These past couple of nights have been really interesting.
I made my first real #lifeaftercollege non-school-related friend.
With absolutely no connection to anyone I've ever known before.
And get this: she's actually cool. What a night.
Okay, so let me catch you up.
On Sunday, after I went to church by myself and started to really get into a big "adult-life" mood, I decided it was time for me to follow up on all of my empty promises and actually plug into the church and serve.
Now that I didn't have school, I had no excuses left and knew it would be good for me to actually be involved in church. So I signed up to serve with the Youth Group and the Creative Team.
That was 2 days ago, and I didn't think much of it after that. So this morning when I got a random text from a random girl telling me that the Youth Team was meeting today to have a "Team Night", I thought "Why not?" and put on my big-girl pants and decided to go.
Well, I went to the mall to look for cute work clothes and then went. Priorities.
What I wasn’t expecting was the uncomfortable feeling that settled into my stomach as soon as I pulled into the lot of the offices.
First off, I couldn't find the correct building and started getting major anxiety. It always makes me feel so weird when I'm by myself and don't know where to go: like the entire universe is in on one big joke and I don’t know what’s going on.
Thankfully, I was able to find it after desperately calling my friend who helped direct me.
But my anxiety rushed right back when it dawned on me as I walked through the front doors that this is the first time in a long time where I would be in a room where I knew absolutely no one.
Which wouldn’t be so bad if it weren’t for the fact that everybody already knew everyone. Oh gosh.
As soon as I stepped inside, my eyes quickly swept the room and I took note of the small huddles of young adults engaged in animated conversation.
I then went straight to the finger-food table (so I could busy myself) and took a bit more time than usual to place 2 mini chicken salad (I think?) croissant sandwiches and a handful of chips on my small party plate.
Trying to draw the least amount of attention to myself, I found a nearby table with some empty space and set my plate there, half-wishing that I didn't come at all and was still mindlessly shopping and enjoying my mediocre selfish and un-servant lifestyle.
Everywhere I looked, someone was talking to someone. And here I was, the new girl, quietly eating a questionable chicken salad sandwich by myself.
"God, help!!! This is so incredibly uncomfortable and I should've just stayed home" I silently prayed... well more like complain.
And then, as if on cue, your girl was blessed with a miracle above all miracles: someone I knew, sitting directly in front of me.
"Caleb!" I exclaimed a bit too eagerly and was relieved when he seemed genuinely as excited. He wasn't exactly someone I was especially close to. I don't even think his number was in my phone.
We just went to college together and has a few friends in common so we saw each other some times. Either way, a familiar face was a familiar face. I could've seen a UH lunch lady and would've been equally as excited.
After he introduced me to the people sitting at his table, it was easier for me to feel comfortable and create conversations. The rest of the night unfolded and was actually really cool. We had praise and worship and I learned a little bit about the mission behind the youth ministry and what I would be doing when I serve, which would be next Thursday (yay!)
By the end of night I had gotten pretty cool with Caleb’s friends and had exchanged a few numbers with the team I would be serving with but hadn’t met someone that I clicked really well with or would actually stick.
When I’m in a new situation or place, I always look for that one person that I really get along with and is funny and I enjoy being around and they become my sticky-friend.
It makes the entire experience 10x better because I always have someone to look forward to seeing, talk to, vent to if need be, and hang out with OUTSIDE of the activity/organization.
Unfortunately, I hadn't found the person yet. But don't worry, even though Team Night was over, everyone was still mulling around catching up, dancing, and eating some leftover donuts so I decided to use that time to find a friend.
Earlier during the service I had noticed 2 black girls that seemed pretty cool and had potential friend status.
But they were all the way across the room and it would be so weird if I just walked up to them and said hi, right?
I mean let's be real - as a post-grad adult, how do adults even make friends? Just talk, right?
They didn’t seem like they were gonna come to me, and I'm not gonna be able to close my eyes and let it happen... so I have to make the first move.
And move I did - all the way across the room, where I tapped one of the girls on the shoulder. She seemed surprised when she turned around and saw me. "I just wanted to come over and say hi," I began as genuine as I could, "I saw you earlier and didn't want you to leave before I could tell you that I love your outfit!" She seemed flattered and we began talking about where she was serving and other things.
Bits of information kept drifting from each other's mouths and it was interesting as if we were doing a get-to-know-you shuffle.
Normally if you're a college student, regardless that our lives may be different, we have a common thread: we're both in college. That means regardless of what year you're in, what you're studying, where you're working, what organizations you're in, it's just a fill in the blank type of thing.
But this... this was completely new. For once I couldn't rely on the common thread of school or a mutual friend to help fill in the blank.
Is this how adults talk to each other when they don't know who the other person is? She looked like she was in her 20s, but that could be any 20s. Was she in college? Did she have a full-time job? Married? These were all things pounding through my head that use to be easy to guess.
Eventually, I found out that she's in the medical field doing something with the guts of a human being. She's also Nigerian, and has a lot of siblings.
We exchanged numbers and I was proud of myself for working up courage to talk to her, but we didn't click well enough for her to be a sticky friend.
Anyway, that left one more black girl to talk to. At this point of the evening the entire room had turned into one big dance party and everyone was doing the Cupid shuffle. I ended up dancing next to Black Girl #2 and got nervous all over again, almost chickening out... almost.
“I love your hair!” I exclaimed randomly and was excited to see her face light up.
Man, compliments are the easiest way to start a conversation with girls. And I actually did love her hair - she had natural dreads that had ombré blonde tips pulled into a messy updo. She also had beautiful dark brown skin and a killer smile.
After that, the conversation flowed really easily and finding out more about her was less of an awkward tussle like the last girl and more like a dance. A really fun and flowy easy-going dance. I found out that she had been going to church for about a year after her brother invited her and joined the team only a month ago. She works with realtors at an energy company and get this: she’s married with 3 kids! I would’ve never guessed because of how young and fruitful she is. Granted she’s still in her late 20s, but her energy was just so awesome.
This was definitely a sticky friend. And I’m pretty sure she felt the same way bc she asked to exchange numbers. Then I said “wow, this is so great! I absolutely have no idea how to make friends as an adult” and she was like “Me toooo! It’s actually so hard to make adult friends.”
Which of course actually meant "I'M SO HAPPY THAT WE ARE FRIENDS NOW, THE BEST, STICKIEST FRIENDS"
And the deal was sealed.
- Corporate Queen
Ecclesiastes 4: 9 - 10
9 Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their labor:
10 If either of them falls down, one can help the other up. But pity anyone who falls and has no one to help them up.