To ensure my place as a “true Texan,” a jar of actual Lone Star dirt placed underneath the Connecticut hospital delivery bed confirmed that I was technically born on Texas soil. But establishing I was half-Texan was not the only attribute that my mother would assure I inherited from her side of the family, though. The day I popped out, Mom made sure to whisper the Girl Scout Promise into my newborn ears, an oration that would stick with me for the next 18 years.
After both my aunt and now-deceased grandmother received the Trefoil Award, an award given to “outstanding [women] and dedicated community leader[s] who embody the beliefs and principles of the Girl Scout Movement,” I had no other choice but to become a Girl Scout. My grandmother was a woman so involved in Girl Scouts that a GS Leadership Center was named in her honor. And she made damn well sure that every one of her daughters and granddaughters would represent the Girl Scout Mission and become “girls of courage, confidence, and character, who make the world a better place.” Keep reading »
When I was wee, I was best friends with the girls who were handy. Neighborhood kids, playgroup participants, and the like. In grade school, I gravitated toward girls who were brainy like me. Since book smarts were considered to be at odds with potential popularity, and since I had more going in the Brains Department than the Social Graces Department, I sought out equally bookish girlfriends. High school was pretty much the same as grade school, but in college, I ran with girls who shared classes, activities, or interests with me. And after college I befriended women who worked with me. Longstanding friendships from school and activities sometimes lingered, but new friends were drawn almost exclusively from my coworker pool. Keep reading »
Happy National Best Friends Day! (No, really. It is!) When it comes to major life transitions and decisions about careers, romantic entanglements, sexual dilemmas, health, and possibly marriage or motherhood, who’s got your back, ladies? That’s right, your girlfriends. In our lives we can’t cast the perfect variety pack of girlfriends, as the creators of “Sex and the City” did – nor would we want to, as gradually getting to know each other is the best part of a relationship – though, if we’re lucky, we do have different kinds of friendships we’ve accumulated over the years to suit the very different aspects of our complex lives. There are eight types of friendships I’ve cultivated that have been essential to my growth as a person. Too bad all these ladies don’t live locally (because a posse would be so nice!), so that I could get them together at the Sunday brunch table, but I can keep them on speed dial. Keep reading »