the conference, so I had to wait until the day after the conference to publish this! Gotta love technology!)
Right now I'm sitting in the Texas M.I.L.K. bloggers lounge at the conference, catching my breath and taking a minute to think about what I've heard so far.
But before I talk about the "official program", I wanted to mention something I heard two women talking about. It seemed that they had just met at the table. They chatted for a minute or two and then when speaker Gretchen Rubin talked about how important good relationships are to happiness one said...
"I would bet that half of the women in this room are lonely. It's so hard to make friends."
The other woman just nodded, then said "Who has time?"
And there, right there, was my post from yesterday. Here, in a room with nearly 5000 women, loneliness was a real issue.
And in quite a few presentations today, I've heard the same theme.
No time for friends. Seeing people once a month or every six weeks is now counted as good enough. No time for one on one visits, so group activities where you can see a bunch of people is good enough. Women starved for connection. Women lonely in the midst of lives that leave them with too many tasks and not enough time to breathe. Women who are seldom if ever far from other people, and yet missing the whole category of friends from their lives.
When I wrote that post yesterday, I had no idea my rant would be repeated in a major conference the very next day. But the extent of my experience with this bone-deep loneliness for girlfriends, and the fact that the same theme was repeated over and over again means that it is NOT just me! It's most of us. Maybe almost all of us.
So what do we do? I wish I had an answer! I wish someone at the conference had an answer. Maybe just getting the reality out there and into our consciousness is the first step. I desperately, passionately hope so.
(Now that I can see this post so far, I see that it's too long to add the conference coverage part, so watch for that is my Thursday post!)