Remember last fall when I was sad about my broken heart? My friends were there. And this summer when I needed emotional support in Maine? My friends were there. Including my DC friends who were there from afar. I am lucky to have people in this city who care about me. But I realized a couple of things while I was away. First, I haven't always shown up for my friends (in good times and bad) as consistently as I could have. Second, because I don't live that close to most of my friends and because we are all awesome people with busy lives (especially my friends who are still playing derby), fun does not usually happen spontaneously. I don't think I realized the latter while I was skating. I thought fun didn't happen because we were all too tired and busy to do things that weren't organized around derby. (Which was also partly true, at least for me.)
So I've decided to start dating my friends. I mean, let's face it. What's better? Another horrific OKCupid date, or a nice, enjoyable cocktail with someone whose company I actually enjoy? Right. I did realize, though, that part of why I haven't made an effort to reach out like this before has to do with fear. This came up when I was talking to one of my friends about how people flake out on things at the last minute. It's a thing. But when it happens to me, it makes me feel like people don't like me. (And Lord knows, I already have enough insecurities!) But what is ironic about this is that I know, as an introvert, I flake frequently. Especially at the end of the day or the end of the week when I lack the energy to deal with people. I flake on people I really care about, and I know it's not about them at all. It's about me and my own energy level.
So I've been making an effort to remind myself that just because someone might be busy when I ask them to do something, or they might end up working late at the last minute or something, it doesn't mean that they don't like me. And now I'm just going to admit that writing that sentence made me feel like an idiot because it seems like a thing that an adult woman should not have to remind herself. But I do. And I honestly think I'm not the only one who feels this way sometimes, which is why I'm writing this. And also why I'm making a conscious effort to be less of a flake myself. So if you're reading this, and we're friends in real life, and we haven't had a friend date in awhile, let's meet up. I promise I won't flake. Unless I really do have to work late. I mean, it is DC after all.