Friendships have always equated to family, especially being an only child. It felt like I had so many sisters growing up. We celebrated holidays together, traveled together and shared our lives together. However, since getting married and becoming a mom, the rank friendships once held has diminished, and rightfully so. My husband and my kids come first, but friendships are still a very necessary part of my life. How to balance them, on the other hand, has become tricky. So, in this installment of the Real Mom Series we are talking about how we maintain friendships. Please be sure to read stories from other moms: Apartment 34The Effortless Chic, The Refined Woman, The Sweetest Occassion

When Elle was born I didn't find it very hard to maintain my friendships. They still took a big chunk of my time, and I was happy to give them the time they deserved. Elle was such an easy baby that she went everywhere with me - to shopping dates, to dinners, to work events...So, it was easy to catch up with friends and stay in their lives. However, when Levi came all of that shifted. Two kids is a lot more work, and, consequently, a lot less spare time for friends. It has taken more intentionality on my part to be a good friend. And truthfully, a lot of them have fallen apart because of it because I just couldn't maintain them all in the way that I wanted to. 

I had to grieve that expectation for myself and my friends. I came to a point of realization that I couldn't have as many friends, and that I the friends that I kept close were the few that I could go deep with. I didn't necessarily just drop people or weed them out. Naturally, I just saw the ones that felt easy and natural. So, proximity plays a big roll, as well as initiation on both parts. 

I have about four good friends that I share with regularly through meet ups, texts and phone calls, and that's about it. And the qualities that I love most about these women are: honesty, a desire to be better, grace for mistakes, and a lot of laughter.

We don't travel together or celebrate holidays together, and they surely don't come before my guy or my kids, but we do share our lives together still. It's just through a lot of intentional conversation, and I've realized that's enough. 

Photos by Rennai Hoefer