For the past 10 years of my adult life, I’ve lived in 6 different cities in 4 different states. The hardest part about moving has been making new friends. I remember when I moved to Atlanta in 2019… I was hopeful I would make new friends. I was off to a good start because I was introduced to Toni by a mutual friend we shared. Toni is warm and very friendly; she quickly included me in her friend circle and invited me to her birthday party. It was there that I met Marla.
Marla wore her hair in an afro puff and had on a blue dress. She sat right across from me, and we chatted about work and life. Marla mentioned that she was working at a camp for the summer. Part of her 9-to-5 job included working at a summer camp, and she had driven 2 hours just to celebrate Toni. I quickly realized Marla was a loyal friend.
After chatting for the whole party, we exchanged numbers. The next day Marla reached out, “Hey, it was great to meet you yesterday. If you ever need anything or want to hang out, let me know. I understand how hard it can be moving to a new city and making new friends.” I was so touched by her kindness. I told Marla I would definitely take her up on her offer.
As time went on, we hung out again, and again, and again. We forged a friendship even though we lived an hour away from each other. I remember visiting Marla’s town and grabbing coffee and ice cream from a few of her favorite places. It was so cool to share that experience with her and her sister, Mariah. Marla was always willing to make the hour-long drive to hang out with me, too. She even went out of her way to water my plants when I was out of town for a while. And when it was time for me to leave Atlanta, Marla was often at my apartment—helping me pack and organize my things. I knew early on that I had made a lifelong friend. Marla’s love and care were truly unconditional. Most times, I never wanted to ask for help, but she showed up anyway.
God used Marla to remind me that life was never meant to be lived alone. Marla’s friendship was crucial for me in a time when I needed community and a sense of belonging.
I never knew my life would be sustained by sisterhood, but sisters are essential to our personal growth. Everyone needs sisters who push you to dream beyond yourself. In tragedy, I call my sisters. When I need support, I call my sisters. When I need to talk about my mistakes, I call my sisters. Sisters have a way of helping you find your way back home—back to yourself when you’ve gotten lost along the way.
My Black sisters in particular have been healing for me. These are women who see me and know me, women who understand the struggle of simply existing in America. Women who are so resilient and who, in the face of evil and injustice, are committed to pressing on anyhow.
As I ponder on the beauty of sisterhood, I’ve discovered this is what my sisters mean to me:
the home for your weary soul.
The love your heart needs.
The fuel to keep you going.
In sisterhood, you are always welcome.
There is always a place for you—
a place for you to show up
and feel seen and dance.
I now live in Maryland, and Marla is still in Georgia, but we are still close. We text, FaceTime, and visit each other when one another is in town. Once when Marla came to visit my husband and me in the DMV area and she needed to go to her uncle’s house an hour and a half away, she had planned to Uber. But my husband insisted we drive her ourselves—that’s community. Marla and I keep showing up for each other even though we live far away. It takes work to build friendships, and we have realized how important it is to sustain ours.
Who are your sisters? How do they challenge you and show up for you?Leave a Comment