I moved to Tampa in the summer of 2008, so I'm not sure when I'm no longer allowed to say that I'm new in town. I still do say it, but more of an excuse as to why I don't know where I'm going, why I can't suggest a restaurant, or why I don't have a whole lot of of friends in town. In the time since I moved here, I started a job (the reason for the move), got a boyfriend, joined the Junior League of Tampa, became involved with the leadership of Emory Alumni Tampa Bay, began selling Stella & Dot, and started my M.Ed. I feel like I have sufficiently involved myself in activities, and now I'm trying to plant more personal roots.
I know I'm "involved" and have lots "going on", but sometimes this has made it more difficult to make friends in each of the activities I do. So, even though I have lots to do all the time, I still find that making those connections with people is sometimes difficult. With so much going on, there isn't a lot of time to get together with people. Plus, it's a strange conundrum to think about having to go out and make friends.
I found a blog today called MWF seeking BFF that actually applies to my situation exactly (I'm really excited to start following it more closely). She moved to Chicago two years ago with her husband and has friends scattered all over the country. This is my story exactly. She talks about pro-actively making friends and what it takes to do so.
These are pictures of me with many of the friends I miss,
spread from New York to Seattle and everywhere in-between.
Since I've never really been in a situation, before moving to Tampa, to have to "make friends" (being that I went from high school to college to living in the city that I went to college in), I have to tell you that it is much harder than you would think. I find keeping up with old friends hard enough, as I feel like I'm constantly playing phone tag and haven't caught up with everyone that I'm supposed to be caught up with; now, the thought of making new friends makes it even more challenging. I have that many more stories to learn and names of boyfriends or husbands or crushes to remember. But, I'm excited about finally planting some roots and making friends with people here in Tampa. I began making friends through my boyfriend since I moved here, but sometimes it's nice to have friends of my own. So, I decided last week to be more pro-active.
I made a few calls and sent a few facebook messages, and I've lined up plans with two girls I met through Junior League this week. I went to one of their weddings a few weeks ago, so we've already established a fairly solid friendship. The other one is someone that I've hung out with a few times over the past year, but she isn't someone that I would feel comfortable texting for lunch or a tv show that day (which I think is the measure of a really good friend). I'm really excited about making closer friendships here in Tampa! I feel like having a kid would make connections, but I'm not in the market for a child for a long while.
For those of you who have also experienced moving to a new city with only a job and no personal connections, what have you done to make closer friends? What is your mark of a "true friendship"?