Yesterday was the last day of summer vacation at our house. My youngest started her first year at the middle school this morning; her sister joins her there as an 8th grader tomorrow.
To celebrate the last day, we planned to spend time with a group of friends we’ve known since my oldest was 2 years old. One family has two boys, the other has a boy and a girl, so with my two girls, we are evenly divided along gender lines. Each family has an 8th grader, each family has a 6th grader; evenly divided along age lines as well. Depending on the day, or the activity, they often divide themselves by either those gender or age groups. Usually, everybody is happy.
But yesterday, there was a glitch. The one girl from outside our family had other plans and was absent from the park and picnic date. I had a small moment of dread thinking my girls would want to bail and I wouldn’t get to talk with the other Moms. (It’s a play date for me, too, when we all get together.)
No fear. They had a blast. Sometimes, they divided by age, with my oldest talking about 8th grade things with her friend, but some new groups formed, too. Mostly, they stayed in a big bunch, adding in some random kids who happened to be at the part that day. Every time I located them out in the park, my girls were with a different group. It was fun to watch.
On the drive home, Thea, my oldest, admitted that she doesn’t have a lot of friends who are boys, but today reminded her that she might want to change that. She had a great time, even without her best-friend–since-we-were-two.
Most of my close friends are female (although my husband is my best friend, truly). I’m a little inspired by Thea’s revelation to look into why that is. Mostly, I’m inspired to enjoy whoever I’m spending time with.