Smelling Like Book Club

Monday Musings by Melinda M.

That’s what my girls tell me when I come home from a night out with either my book club girlfriends or my other group of girlfriends – I’ll call them my birthday club girlfriends. I’ll come home, walk quietly into their rooms to kiss them goodnight, and they as they wrap their arms around my neck, they inhale and say, “Mommy, you smell like book club.” Huh? What does “book club” smell like?

Well I guess it smells like laughter, love, probably wine, relaxation and good health. And today, when I sat down to write this blog, I saw this article in my inbox that confirmed all of that – the importance of friendships to our longevity and quality of life.

What it says is all so true – that as we go through phases it’s difficult to stay in touch with all the friends in your life. It’s even difficult just to do it with the friends you have now given the demands you have now. I wish I could see or talk to them as often as I’d like, like when you’re in college or a teenager. But they are with me almost on a cellular level, influencing my emotions and sometimes decisions since each of them have been with me at influential moments in my life.


Best friend from HI, lives in MI, met me in Chicago with my NJ cousin, stage left

On a trip back east last month, I was so excited to reunite with different friend groups – six of my childhood friends, three of my college friends, two of my summer camp friends and even my one Sunday school friend, which is hilarious given that I didn’t grow up religiously and that I only went there for two years. We calculated that it had been between 25-30 YEARS since we had seen each other. Holy crap. It was an amazing week with all of them. We reminisced some, caught up on our lives some more and moved our friendship forward a bunch. I bet I smelled like a whole lotta book club that week!

And after that week, I was able to spend time with the one person who’s always been in my life, though we haven’t always been friends: my sister. Now that I’m a grown up, I turn to her with highs and lows that I’m not sure I can burden others with and that’s the result of her patience with me and work from both of us.


My sister, as Tahitian mom to her niece

Although it may sound like I’m trying to justify going out and having a good time, I hope I’m showing my girls the importance of making time for friends, of going out and having fun, of cultivating relationships – much in the same way many of us model our careers to our children. And if they haven’t learned it yet, I’m more than happy to continue showing them for years and years to come!