When I was a young school girl, almost all of my friends were boys. I did have the occasional female friend growing up, but after two 'besties' in my pre-teen years, I couldn't seem to find another female friend. My friends - all of them - for many years were all male.
My parents told me that would change when I grew up, but it didn't seem to change. I found that most of my friends were all males, except for the occasional female boss or coleague. Still, in 2006 when I found myself working in a male-dominated 'technology' industry selling production camera accessories, it worked to my advantage. I knew how to relate to guys.
Some guys seemed to take my friendly mannerisms for something else, and me being me, I didn't notice. Often a friendship would be destroyed by an advance from someone I thought of as a friend. In 2009 I was told that a problem I was having with a male boss was my fault because I was 'too nice' to him. I was then told that I was 'too nice' to all the guys I worked with, when all but one of them were guys.
I've always been a 'tough' girl. I've related well to men in many ways - being a tom boy. I climbed trees and played with worms as a little girl. I fought with the boys as a pre-teen just for fun. I loved old cars and target shooting with my father. I played football with the boys! In fact, I broke my foot doing it. I've always been a tom boy.
Finally, about this time last year, things started to change for me. I made a few new friends. Suddenly the balance shifted.
Now that I've settled comfortably into my 30's, life has morphed into something glorious. I found a long, lost uncle or two whom I adore and NEED in my life. I've traveled to places I've never been before, formed a family that I find I would have been lost without many times over, bonded with people over distances never imagined before the days of the internet, and discovered a little bit more about myself. My friends can rightly be split almost down the middle between males and females, though the majority of the really close ones are all female. That's certainly a first since I was 11 years old.
I have become who I was meant to be.
I have my friends and loved ones to thank for that.
I'll come back home... I promise.