My wolf pack is like a second family. My wolf pack is a group of women who are like sisters to me, and who I can rely upon for virtually anything. Despite knowing each other for only a few years – we met through baby groups – we love and would do anything for each other as though we have been friends forever. I think every woman needs a wolf pack. I could not survive without mine, and here’s why:
- We are stronger than the sum of our parts. In our little group of five, we have an excellent seamstress, we have more than one brilliant baker. We have thrifty types who can always find a bargain, practical ones who can help with DIY or gardening, and we have medical bods who can be called on instead of resorting to 111. We are a microcosm of (granted, somewhat middle-class) society – none of us have everything, but between us we do pretty well!
- There is always someone there when you need them. We’re not a huge group, but it’s hard to get us all together very often, despite living really locally to one another. However, being so close as a group, I can more or less guarantee that at least one person will be available if I need a friend. Some of us work, some of us don’t, but we see each other as often as we can, usually with the kids, but as often as we can wangle it, without. A Whatsapp message to the group is all it takes to secure a cup of tea, a listening ear and a hug when needed, and I love that. Together we support, we commiserate and we celebrate through all of life’s ups and downs…and there is
usuallyalways cake involved.
- Communal parenting. They say that it takes a village to raise a child; my wolf pack is my village! I reckon that sometimes, if we’re out en masse, it’s probably not immediately obvious which child belongs to who. We spend so much time together that the kids play (and fight) like siblings, and we mums administer tickings-off as and when. We trust each other to look after each others’ children, and the children know us all well enough to be perfectly happy to be dropped off at someone’s house whilst mum goes to the supermarket or to get the coil fitted (because nobody needs a 3-year old peering up their bits asking the nurse what they’re doing to Mummy’s front bottom). And our group camping trip was brilliant because between us we were (probably) collectively just about sober enough to keep an eye on the littles.
- Husband borrowing. Despite being a strong and independent woman who don’t need no man…furniture is heavy and I REALLY hate mowing the lawn. At times like these I really miss having a husband. My wolf pack supplies me with four potential husbands to borrow as and when required…but no, you dirty beasts, there are no keys in a bowl at our gatherings, thank you very much!
- We protect each other. Wolves are fierce! And very, very loyal. I have realised this in particular since my marriage came crashing down around me. I never knew that such sweet, gorgeous creatures could be so snarly and vicious! Towards my ex, that is. My wolf pack lived out my anger, hurt and indignation, and actually that protected me from myself. They fielded and felt my emotions for me, and this meant that I was able to stay relatively calm and objective throughout the whole sorry scenario. It was totally unexpected but I really think they kept me afloat during that time- I’m not sure I’d have made it through the last eighteen months without them. On a more day-to-day and less dramatic basis, we just try to look after each other. We deliver wine-and-cake care packages to doorsteps when someone’s had a tough day at work, ask if anyone needs anything before we make a trip to Ikea or Aldi, and offer to take the toddler if pregnant mum needs a nap. It’s what wolfies do.
I am a very very lucky lady to have my wolf pack, I know that – believe me I really do. They are the best friends that a girl could ever ask for, and I only hope that I can be as good a friend as they have been to me over the past few years. In this day and age, where relationships are lived out through memes and statuses, and where despite all the noise people report feeling lonelier and lonelier, it has never been more important to make the effort to reach out and connect. Motherhood has cemented that for me: I don’t know how any woman survives the early weeks, months and years without their sisters.
Call it a friendship group, call it a tribe, call it whatever you like, but every woman needs a wolf pack.