Friendship is one of those gifts in life we can run to when it feels like the rest of the world just doesn’t get us. On a day when life hasn’t been cooperating exactly as you’d hoped, who hasn’t called that friend we can vent to, cry to, laugh with, and compare notes with? And the longer a friendship goes, the deeper the bond seems to be. But some of us are in spaces in our lives where we’ve had to follow another dream and leave the proximity of our friends. And the work of friendship takes on a different layer. It can be difficult to connect like we used to–even if it was just dropping by to say hi because you could–it’s harder to keep relationships alive when you don’t see your friend daily, weekly, or even monthly. In this second installment of our For the Love of Conversations with Jen and Kelly, we are talking all about friendship and how it changes as you mature, grow, and perhaps even re-locate. And how to keep it going strong—even across the divides of family commitments, jobs, and miles in between. Jen and Kelly first had this conversation over on Kelly’s podcast, but we loved it so much we had to share it here–plus–-Jen has added some of her own insights and comments regarding her friendship with Kelly and what she learned through their conversation.
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“We're older and friendships have shifted and we have changed. A friend that was a friend 15 years ago doesn't have a tidy space in the life we have now, or our lives have changed. We've moved, and making new friends at our age can be really challenging. I don't think it's as trite as it might sound.”
– Jen Hatmaker
“Those precious friends that are in every nook and cranny, the ones who need nothing, no invitation, no permission, no entertaining, they can be pretty rare. I think we probably treasure them and miss them when we don't have them.” – Jen Hatmaker
“I like the appreciation you're showing for some of the spaces where friendships can be surprising, where they're not just the ones we choose or we seek out, or the thing that we have in common is so obvious that we're just bound to be friends. Some of those are the most interesting people that come into our lives.” – Jen Hatmaker
“I'm a fixer like you, and I'm smart at fixing. I'm so good at it if everybody would listen to me. But I've been in really serious therapy for the last year and a half just working through all of it. Part of it has been my kids suffering, which like me, okay, I can handle this. My kids suffering? Just put me under.”
– Jen Hatmaker
“What's interesting is the challenge. What's interesting is a little bit of tension, a completely different opinion or perspective or experience. That's interesting. That makes me curious. That'll keep me locked in.” – Jen Hatmaker
“A connected life drunk with rich relationships is central to my soul theology. I hold so many elements of my life loosely. My career and platform matter enormously, and I aim to offer the truest best work I'm capable of. But if it went away or shifted, I'd adjust my sails. However, if all I was left holding were relationships with my family and closest community, if that is all that remained, I would still consider myself the luckiest girl on earth. My life derives its greatest meaning, its power and energy, from the people I love who love me too.” – Jen Hatmaker
Kelly’s Podcast, Kelly Corrigan Wonders
Books & Resources Mentioned in This Episode
For the Love of Friendships: Savoring Your Friendships with Shauna Niequist
Connect with Jen!