Who will receive your time and energy?

Hi Friends,

I hope you all enjoyed the long Memorial Weekend. With whom did you spend time? I had a great balance of kitchen nook friends and front porch friends, not too many BBQ friends. If you missed last week’s newsletter about creating your village, you can find it here. It’s been an interesting exercise for me and I’ve invested a great deal of thought with intention. 

The biggest question this work begs is – who will receive my time and energy? Not who deserves it nor who wants it, but who will receive it? Time and energy represent limited resources; so, we only have so much of them. What I found as I reflected on these three spaces was my desire to give many people my time and/or energy without requiring or expecting the same in return. No, let me be more honest. I felt obligated and well-practiced at giving people time and energy because that’s what I have always done. Don’t get me wrong, I understand ebbs and flows of friendship. AND, I’ve also realized that we can all do a better job on this exercise of friendship and figuring out to whom and where our time and energy should go. That said, taking an inventory captures and creates space for how we spend our time and energy. 

This weekend – I got to dive DEEP in with some kitchen nook friends. Remember, these are the small group of friends that have a seat at our table. They’re not more important (all of our friends are important!) than other friends, but they are more intimate and available. Therefore, they deserve, require and reciprocate time and energy with you. What I’ve found about my kitchen nook friends is that we can be raw, honest and vulnerable with each other. That’s taken work on my part and requires effort from them too. But here’s the result of some hard-core kitchen nook labor:

  • She calls at 3am when you’re navigating divorce and cries with you.
  • You’re there to bring her snacks during child labor.
  • She roots for your kids when you can’t be there. 
  • She loves your kids. 
  • She withholds judgement and simply listens. 
  • She’s loyal.
  • She’s your biggest fan and will celebrate you with champagne in her backyard.
  • She’ll organize a closet until 11am, drinking wine and commiserating about kids.
  • She’s honest. Really honest. Even when it’s hard.
  • She’ll hop on a plane to celebrate your daughter’s graduation. 
  • She trusts you with her babies. Her marriage. Her mental health. 
  • You never wonder where you stand. 
  • You never have to explain that you’re a good person. 
  • You laugh until you cry together. 
  • You celebrate marriages, divorces, babies, and graduations and cry during losses. 
  • You show up for the daily stuff – via phone or in person – because the daily stuff is what makes up the big stuff. It’s life. It’s what you’re navigating together. 

Here’s to these friends. The I-always-think-you’re-beautiful-even-when-life-is-not-beautiful-and-I-celebrate-you-always type of friends. Does your list have to look like mine? Nope. You can create your own list of negotiables and non-negotiables. But please do create one. You deserve it.