Offense vs. Defense and The Importance of Female Friendship

Throughout high school I had very few close female friends -- two to be exact.

The average hangout in my basement could be classified as a "sausage fest." I took pride in the fact that I was "one of the guys." I constantly told myself I "just don't get along with girls."

Boy, was I 1.) mistaken 2.) missing out. 

Now, do not get me wrong, I still love every single one of my guy friends from home (and college) very dearly. How could I not enjoy the company of those who are willing to marathon Lord of the Rings while playing Lord of the Rings Risk? Or have a Nerf Gun War right before a hurricane? Or play barefoot soccer in the middle of Philadelphia at midnight to ring in 2016?

It wasn't until college, maybe even this year that I truly learned the importance of female friendship.

I won't lie to you all. I have had a rough couple of months. I experienced my first breakup, I had to confront mental health issues head on, and I lost my dog after a long battle with cancer. 

If it weren't for the many amazing ladies in my life I would probably still be sulking in bed, not eating, unable to muster any sort of motivation to keep moving my life forward. Through every awful day (or week or month) my friends have pulled me out of my head and reminded me what's important. There is something special about telling your "girl squad" you're suffering and within an hour having them all in your bed hugging you and feeding you cookies while you cry it out. 

Throughout these rough patches and hours of advice and consoling I've learned there are two different kinds of female friends and both are equally important. Every girl needs her offense and her defense

Her offense is there to tell her how stupid and awful that boy is that she's crying over. 

Her defense is there to tell her she's beautiful and that she'll get through this. 

The offense will support her when she wants to confront that (now former) friend who broke the "girl code." 

The defense will calm her down every time she gets too worked up and anxious over said person.

Without an offense I would never know the importance of standing up for myself.  I would let people walk all over me. My offense has taught me that sometimes it is okay to be mad at others, not everything is my fault or something I, alone, am responsible for fixing. They have made me a much stronger person with thicker skin. 

Without a defense my mental state would be down. down. down. I would still be constantly self deprecating and unable to accept any sort of compliment. I never would have learned that opening up and letting people see your feelings is really okay and sometimes (whoa) even helpful. My defense has allowed me to mature emotionally into a stronger person who isn't ashamed to admit when she is down. 

Thank you to my current offense and defense (and every female friend I've ever had, past and present) for helping me to become the woman I am proud to be today.