I got a bit philosophical on Facebook this week, after some fairly childlike shenanigans in my main social group leading to most of us being blocked and unfriended after someone was challenged over some fairly inappropriate behaviour.  It’s the second time this year a couple have chosen to extract themselves from the group with no explanation and it’s sad, in most senses of the word.

I always assumed that when I was a “grown-up” that kind of behaviour would be left behind in the playground, but it seems to just as prevalent. Maybe social media brings it to the fore, and maybe also brings out the worst in some people.  Gives them a platform with the shield of not being face to face or having to own their behaviours or choices. Who really knows, but it’s caused some turmoil and really revealed that you don’t always know people as well as you think.

I’ve always been lucky to have a fairly large social circle. About three main groups with very slight areas of crossover if mapped on a Venn diagram.  One is my “home” group and comprises those I met at infant, junior and secondary school and am still in contact with, plus people I worked with while a student. It’s a fairly static group these days; the new additions mainly being babies. The second is my “uni girls” group. Again, fairly static, I’m the only single one and the majority have children and/or work in education. The third and biggest group is the “woo folk”; people I met through a male friend at uni and have known since my late teens and early twenties. The core is fairly constant but there have been some departures and arrivals over the years, but this year has seen real change.

As well as the “it’s my ball and I’m taking it home” nonsense, others have also been dealing with serious health issues and family problems. However we have also had great times away together as well as celebrating birthdays, an engagement and a wedding.  And we’ve also had some new people join our group and it’s been fabulous.  I said on Facebook that they’d arrived “crashing in with glasses in hand and it feels they’ve always been there. And they’ll stay”. It’s true. Although I only met them a relatively short while ago, we are connected.  I feel know them better than the ones who chose to leave, one of whom I’d known over twenty years.  

I was in a virtual chat with two of them after midnight yesterday discussing dating, kissing critique, enormous cheeses and flavoured tequila. It involved Fawlty Towers impressions, hobbit references, train journeys and tears of laughter. It was wonderful, refreshing and ridiculous. Perfect.

 I call these combined groups my tribe. It may sound corny or trite, but I don’t care. We are all connected through mutual friends, shared values, similar interests and experiences, some losses and ridiculous senses of humour.  But at the middle is mutual respect and love. They both shine through.

This year has been a bit of an odd one in terms of friendships particularly, but I do think it’s been a leveller as well as an eye-opener.  People’s reactions to change, and to you making life-changing choices, can be very interesting.  Particularly when it throws their balance off when you refuse to engage with their power games and instead challenge their belief that everything revolves around them.  For me it’s helped to reveal what and who are truly important. I feel I’ve found my space and it’s a good place. Life is short. Grab it, use it, love it, don’t waste it.

4 thoughts on “Que?

  1. Take 2-
    Well put Sarah, my Facebook activity this week has been in response to Mental Health day and how often what we post in social media is a facade that we want people to see rather than the reality. No ones life is perfect and we are all flawed. We all have relationships or areas of our life that don’t always run smoothly. I’m so glad you have found your ‘groove’; I have had a crap year this year and really struggled with accepting that I have not always been able to cope and found it difficult. Just typing that makes me well up.
    One issue I have is when people address you as ‘hello stranger’ or complain that you haven’t been in contact with them. As if there is an unwritten rule that it is always me who has to keep the lines of communication lines open; and like a fool I feel guilty about it. I am sad that people have such high expectations, yet fail to live by them themselves.
    I have been heartened by the DGGS girls and that so many years have passed and everyone has just picked up where we left off, no prejudice, no bitterness. It has restored my faith!
    Proud to be part of your tribe, we pick up where we left off each time!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Claire, proud to have you there too. Thanks for taking the time to leave such an eloquent and articulate response 😘. Agree with you completely on other people’s expectations, but as long as you are true to you, they don’t really matter. It’s taken me a long time to get to that realisation and shake off the feelings of guilt and responsibility that I’ve put on myself. It’s very liberating once you take that step though. It’s been great seeing you this year & looking forward to our next catch up xx


  2. I know i’m Late to this particular party, but I always appreciate that you travel so far and so regularly to maintain our friendship. I was glad to come to London last year for your birthday and would gladly travel to you more often… and feel that I really should. It’s a two way street and sometimes I forget to go out of my way to let people know that I care. Xx

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you for the comment. Always happy to meet in London, but I also enjoy my Woo escape escapades! Still not been to your place so we should aim to fix that this year xx


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