That’s the word that comes to mind when I’m with a group of women doing what we do.
I don’t mean to be late to the Ya-Ya party, but recently – maybe it’s my age and introspective self kicking in – I find time spent with other women to be healing, inspiring, comforting and familiar.
My people. Those who understand me, not that my beloved doesn’t have the decoder ring for my quirks and idiosyncrasies, but women just know.
My tribe is multi-faceted, like the purest diamond in the rough. I have a circle of women friends who perform together, sure of ourselves on stage and willing to have each other’s backs when things get dicey. There is love in the room when we get together and boundless, freeing laughter. I love being with them, even when we get on each other’s nerves. I’m grateful for the feelings and emotions they bring out in me. With them I feel safe.
Tribal. With feathers.
Another group of women are new to me. In my ongoing reinvention, I want to make new friends, hear new opinions and explore new friendships. I joined a group of women recently for a night around the firepit; plied with food and drink, we talked for hours about more topics than I can remember. I knew two women when I walked in, but at midnight, I left with six new friends and an appreciation for their life experiences.
I actually felt some growing pains that night, except they weren’t really pains, they were more like kinks working out of new muscles that were getting some long-overdue use.
Tribal. For good.
A good friend lost her mother the other day and my first reaction was to rush to her side because it was what we do. Men are good company but women have the tribal need to gather, to discuss, to dissect and problem solve. We make coffee, make sure people are fed and people get to where they need to be. We try to provide a protective shield to give our sister time to heal, time to work out the issues pounding in her head, share our common experiences to give her resources, all the while reassuring ourselves that this is part of life and we will be all right, even if the struggle seems overwhelming. We prepare for the backsplash of emotions, we put on the good faces, we are strong for each other and there for each other when we fall apart.
This isn’t meant to go against any of the feminist principles I have embraced all my life, it doesn’t pigeonhole women into a subservient role. But the sisterhood is strong, with the warp and weave of love.