THE BLOG
12/19/2013 12:17 EST | Updated 02/18/2014 05:59 EST

I Feel 14 Again: Making New Friends After Moving

Have you ever noticed that history has a way of repeating itself, especially if you haven't paid attention and learned the lesson the first time around?

I say this because I have just realized that I am facing the same situation I first dealt with when I was 14. We moved as a family from Scotland to London, England which was an exciting career move for my father, but as a teenager with my first boyfriend, quite devastating for me.

I remember, with the angst of adolescence, telling my parents that they had "ruined my life FOREVER." Not true obviously, in that I not only lived to tell the tale, but moved on. However, I really missed my friends, and three months after we'd moved, my parents wisely allowed me a short visit back to Edinburgh to catch up with my friends there.

But you know what... I didn't. Because once you have left, you've left and frankly you are history. Nothing was the same. It was like I had never lived there, never hung out with my friends. So I came "home" realizing that I needed to focus on making new friends and while a couple of my Scottish girlfriends still kept in touch with me (and still do) the rest were toast.

And I did, but it took time. I was a bit battered and bruised from this experience and so a bit nervous about putting myself out there, all vulnerable, looking for friends.

Well, a couple of months ago we moved full time to our farm, just an hour from where we used to live... but far enough to make a difference. Now this has been a gradual process, and one that I welcomed, but I have noticed in the four-year transition that gradually I would get left out of invitations because folks would think I wouldn't want to drive that far, and to be honest, they were right, but it changed our relationships.

Now, I can see that I need to focus my energies on making new friends, because like my pals in Edinburgh, everyone has moved on, and it's time I did too. Except as an adult it is not so easy, especially when your children no longer live at home and do not serve as an access point to other adults.

I also find that as a small business owner, I don't exactly have that much time to cultivate new friendships, so I tend to link up with other business owners, and that's not a bad thing, but they are not always exactly next door.

I remember when my children were little, we had some great neighbours. One, who had four children, would come over when she was having a not-so-great-day with a glass of wine and dinner in hand, saying she would rather grab a few moments of sanity with me, before entering the den.

We are friends to this day, but she lives in a city right across the country. But that's what I want, someone I can borrow sugar from or advice, whichever I need the most at the time. Maybe this is an unrealistic quest, especially when you live in the country, but one thing I know for sure, I need to get out there.

Just as I did when I was 14, it is time to move on, face my new reality and broaden my horizons. Coffee anyone?

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