‘I am grateful for girlfriends. I’m sorry it took me so long to realize you are my heroes.’: Woman thanks her ‘tribe’ of best friends who help deal with the ‘real stuff’

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“I just can’t hold it in right now. It’s a feeling that’s been bursting at the seams lately. My gratitude is running deep with crowns and gold and ‘you can do it’ rosie-the-riveter bandana-of-badass womanly spirit.

I am grateful for girlfriends.

Honestly, I didn’t really ‘get it’ until my 30’s; until the dramas of life started to be really critical. Lifetime level heartbreaks, pregnancies, cancers, divorces, careers, health, death. The real stuff. The real real. The stuff that actually changes the trajectory of your life, and not in one of those ‘you’ll find out one day’ ways; but instead, in those ways that are so wildly (and gut wrenchingly?) obvious in the now.

I’m in such gratitude for discovering what sisterhood is in my 30’s; the new friendships *and* the developed friendships I brought into this age. It’s just different now. It feels like we’re all doing life together, fighting to make sure life isn’t doing us. And when I think about all my close girlfriends, I see that no one’s life is the same. It’s like a massive bookstore aisle containing dozens and dozens of different NY Times best-selling novels that you can’t put down. I’m not bored by a single one of their lives.

Tell me more.

Let’s brunch.

Catch me up! 

Courtesy Alex Frost

The truth is, things happen so rapidly at this age, and with such importance, that sometimes you want to pierce your nails into the steady, and desperately hold on. It’s those friends that run up next to you and paint your nails while they’re ripping out of your clenched grip; who hold onto your body while you’re slipping out from under the wall of change; who sit with you slumped on the ground for as long as you need BEFORE they pick you back up. Yes, it’s those friends that you have through that heart crushing, soul pivoting, kill-you-before-you’re-stronger life-changes-NOW kind of seasons, that matter.

These are the friends that long-ago created tribes. The village members who raise your children. The humans who rebuild with what’s left, in your honor, when it all gets taken away.

These friends are the ones who are not only capable of feeling your pain so deeply, but they take a deep breath and they don’t question joining you. They take it on with you. In your 30’s, it’s these friends where you can’t go very long without telling them how much you love them, because you absolutely need to make it known that you might not be able to live without them.

Courtesy Alex Frost

And I’ll tell you, when life evolves as much as it does at this age, you end up surrendering with your arms reached out. And then whoosh! One minute later you’re spinning like a tornado. What happens? Sometimes your arms swing out and accidentally knock someone over. And sometimes it’s one of these friends. I think some of the hardest conversations in this decade so far have been the super vulnerable ones that hold a friendship in PERIL. But you know what else I’ve noticed? These are also the easiest conversations to admit I was wrong; to tell the truth; to say I’m sorry; to cry and ask for forgiveness. Because honestly, queens, I’m talking to you, I just don’t think I can do this without you. My ego has nothing on this level of love.

So, hold onto the ones who say yes to midnight richter-scale-10 anxiety attack phone calls; the ones who keep asking how you feel about that one thing, even though their ears could bleed from the broken record you keep preaching; the ones who celebrate your wins as if they were their own; the ones who say, ‘tell me the truth’ and when you do, they hate it AND love you more; the ones who say, ‘wear a pink wig for my birthday’ and you say, ‘I hate wigs. I’ll buy extra in case anyone forgets.’

To my girlfriends… all of you… the ones I talk to every day, the ones I talk to every month, even and especially the ones where our *only* conversations exist of, ‘I love and miss you so much, we need to hang out soon’ (because sometimes just knowing they’re there is enough) … I freaking love you. I’m sorry, but I don’t know how else to express how intensely this conviction is.

I just freaking love you.

Every piece of my soul that is any part fierce, any part feminine, any part badass warrior-woman-hear-me-roar and universe-stop-to-hear-me-weep? …is really just you; your permission; your love; your bold, beautiful, unwavering sisterhood.

Thank you. I’m sorry it took me so long to arrive into a world where you are my heroes. But I’m here now, and you are all wearing capes made of 1,000 thread count gold, and I’ve never felt prouder of a sky lit up with such ongoing bat signals that seem to also disappear as quickly as they appear. We collectively swoop in like a hive of bees tending to their queens, and it’s the most beautiful masterpiece of life I’ve ever been a part of.

I love you. You are my deepest gratitude. I can’t do this without you. I hope you feel the same.”

Courtesy Alex Frost

This story was submitted to Love What Matters by Alex Frost, 33, of Santa Barbara, California. Follow her journey on Instagram hereDo you have a similar experience? We’d like to hear your important journey. Submit your own story here. Be sure to subscribe to our free email newsletter for our best stories, and YouTube for our best videos.

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