Sitting in a cafe today I had one of those time standing still moments. As I sat with my husband and youngest daughter I glanced across the room to see a gorgeous young woman enter and greet two of her cherished friends. You could tell straight away these three women loved each other and it instantly transported me to a time in my own life before I had children.

It was a chapter where my girlfriends were everything. They were my support, my inspiration, my confidantes and my encouragement. They challenged me to grow beyond my awareness and abilities. They laughed with me. Cried with me. They lived the questions of life alongside my growing fragile heart. We traded stories and tears and food and dreams. We imagined what was to come and invested heart-fulls of possibility into how we thought the future would unfold for each of us. Those days were precious and at the time I thought they would go on for ever.

The thing is, they didn’t.

Fast forward a decade or so and life is very different. Life has been richer and more colourful than I ever imagined possible. This sacred sisterhood helped me navigate my teens, twenties, thirties, marriages, divorce, separation, children, loss and losing loved ones to suicide. We have each had to say goodbye to precious people way too soon. Our hearts have broken and mended more times than I can count. We have fallen and risen and fallen again.

For the most part those of us still living check in as often as we can. We balance our own families and extended families and partners families and friends and children and careers and volunteer jobs and homes and gardens and communities all while doing our best to stay connected to our own hearts and the dreams we planted in them long ago.

Truthfully, life continues to get better. And by better I mean more fulfilling and beautiful. At the same time my responsibilities have increased many times over. I have so many people to consider with every decision I make its taken me years to remember I actually have permission to consider me too.

This dance, this rich, fulfilling everything I ever dreamt of responsibility dance fills every moment of my day. I am fulfilled. I am stretched. I am thankful and content.

I still have the same number of moments in each day, yet the smorgasbord of options to share those moments with has expanded exponentially.

So, sitting here, glancing you three across the room melted my heart. The beauty of the chapter you are living made my eyes leak. And the beauty of this chapter I am living does the same.

Sometimes I watch my mum and her girlfriends. They have entered a chapter I am yet to arrive in and know very little about. I notice how they are always laughing and I wonder if I’ve become a bit too serious. I remember how in an earlier chapter of my life, exploring with my girlfriends, I was so quick to laugh. If I’m truthful that chapter of deep exploration also contained a bathtub of tears too. And while this current chapter of life is ever so constant, and we don’t see each other as much as we used too, we each do our best to carve out sacred time to share together. And dreaming forward as our little ones grow I’ve got to wondering if a version of that spacious life will come again? I’d love another chapter with my precious girlfriends where we have freedom to plan road trips and festivals and adventures. One where we can reminisce about the previous chapter of our life that was full of little children, unending juggling and responsibilities, yet somehow deeply sacred while it swallowed every waking moment.

So whatever chapter you find yourself in, may you be blessed. May you have the support and encouragement and the belief of other women. And even if you stand alone may you remember there are countless women behind you, me included. We are trusting you. Believing for you. Encouraging you and counting on you to show up brave and real.

Be blessed my dears,
All love ❤️
Bless you three beauties, please write to me if you ever read this xoxo

And Thank you, AGAIN, with all my heart.

(The Vegie Bar, Brunswick Street, Fitzroy Victoria).

Kate M Foster

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