I've blogged about this subject before - so apologies for repeating myself, but I just need to get this off my chest. I might just be one of those people, who will never be satisfied with what they've got, regardless of what they've got. I'll probably always be searching for that thing, that elusive thing that seems to be missing. What is that thing?
Is it more money? A house by the sea? A husband who's home more often? A warmer climate? A full and active social life? A hobby that occupies me? Good old fashioned contentment?
I don't know what the answer is, but I do know that what I am missing desperately in my life is girlfriend. A real one. Like that best friend you used to have when you were in primary school.
When Saturdays roll around, we have the normal merry-go-round of football and grocery shopping and chores. But every now and then I do have a day when I don't have to do those things and I could have time to myself to head off to the shops and browse, have a coffee and chat. The problem is, I don't have a friend to do that with.
Now I know that makes me sound like norman no mates.
I do have friends. I have friends who live far away. And I have friends who live across the road. I even have bloggy friends. But on weekends everyone seems to do couple-type things or are pre-booked for months hence. Or who, quite frankly, just don't seem to have the same need for friendship.
I have friends who I know would be up for an afternoon of girly shopping and chewing the fat, but it would all need to be arranged and organised months in advance. I want spontaneity. (Picky, picky I hear you say). But I want to have the type of friend who I can call up and say: 'Fancy running off to Costa Coffee before browsing for nothing in particular?' without having to pre-plan it all. I want to feel confident enough that they won't find that weird, and that in fact, that they'd call me and ask me to do that with them.
Or take last night for example. Friday night at home on my own - again. I could have (and probably should have) worked, but it was Friday for God sake. I would have loved to call up a friend and say: Fancy coming over for a glass of wine and a chat? But besides several old friends who live too far away for a casual Friday night glass of wine, I've got no-one nearby that I yet feel comfortable enough to ask. Or rather, ask again. Because I have asked. I've arranged get togethers. I've suggested things. But no-one ever seems to return the favour. And the friendship never seems to move forward.
I've been living in the UK for almost 6 years now and in our current village for 3.5 years. During that time I've run toddler groups, got on pre-school committees, gone to village events and have made an effort to be friendly with neighbours - all in a bid to get to know people and make friends. Yet STILL there is this wall of polite distance that seems impossible to cross. Perhaps it's because I'm South African. Perhaps we just do friendship differently.
With sisters you can do this type of thing without fear of rejection. You might call. They might be busy. But in no way will it feel like you're imposing on them. Unfortunately, my sisters live in New Zealand and Ireland, making an impromptu shopping trip or a quick glass of wine a little tricky.
Am I alone in feeling like this? Does everyone else have so many friends that they can barely find the time to breathe, much less go out for yet another coffee? And how do you get to that point in a friendship where you're comfortable enough to call, be turned down but know that they genuinely appreciated you offering and are very likely to return the favour soon?
I know from comments on my previous post on this subject that I'm not alone. But how can we change it?