many of my friends have marveled at the well oiled organization of my church. specifically in terms of attending a new congregation anywhere and having insta-plans and semi-insta-friends. i found this to be true time and again during my single years.
but married socialization, well, that is an entirely different story. i floundered five years ago after a move across the country and no local friends. marriage brought changes to many social dynamics, specifically fitting into the “graduated from college years ago, working with no kids” category. i felt beyond lonely. finding kindred spirit friends was harder than before given the intricacies of adulthood.
whether i was in the market for girlfriends or married couple friends, it sometimes felt like dating. not to mention the complexity of keeping up my already existent friendships living in different zip codes. to remedy my situation i took a proactive approach. we began inviting a different family over for dinner every sunday after church.
opening your home and sharing a meal can be an intimate exchange. we were able to get to know families in our congregation more quickly and feel more invested in our new church family.
at times i still feel pangs of loneliness. i ache for a specific type of friend or conversation. sometimes those feelings are calmed and comforted and sometimes they quiet to a dull hum in the back of my memory where they lay dormant for a little while.
rather than allow those sentiments to fester i’ve gotten to work in the kitchen. after church a special little helper came home with me to help before her family arrived. the eight of us filled our table. we dined on homemade tamales and fresh salsa. little hands took their plates to the sink and rinsed them. little feet explored our crawl space.
tonight, after my kitchen was empty with the dishwasher running, we were invited into another home for dessert and lots of laugher.
today we not only feasted but found fellowship and were filled.