Two Generations All-Girl Weekend
For the second year my best friend of 35 years, Gaylen Tips, and I joined with my daughter-in-law Sarah Symm, and her good friend Jennifer Weiman for an “All Girl Weekend.” Since Gail and Jen both live in the San Francisco area, Sarah and I traveled to meet them in the City by the Bay.
Last year we traveled to the beauty of Carmel, and this year we chose to see Alcatraz before heading out to Lake Tahoe. Traveling in the car always offers a unique opportunity for discussions about everything from pop news to more serious topics like how to deal with office politics.
Since Jen had just become engaged the previous weekend she started the ongoing conversation about what the key to a good marriage is. Gail has been married to her husband, Carl, for 29 years, Gene and I have been married 20, and Sarah and my son, Zach, have been married 2 years. So, Jen got perspective across generations.
As we shopped, ate, and laughed we shared thoughts about the most important aspects of our relationships. We chose respect as the most important factor in keeping a marriage strong. We agreed that it was the core of every aspect including communication and faithfulness. The conversations were rich with each of our experiences. I think there were moments where we each went passed our comfort level and continued knowing that discomfort would lead to growth.
We talked about sex, and babies, and menopause and all the changes that women face as we age. Gail and I emphasized the importance of understanding our hormones and finding a physician who would work with us every step of the way.
As the weekend passed all to quickly I began to reflect on how differently generations now interact. In my wildest dream I can’ t imagine sitting with my mother or my mother-in-law and having these kind of honest conversations. I wonder how much easier my life transitions might have been if I had factual information about all the transitions I, as a woman, have and would face. How would have my relationships been stronger with a sage mentor?
Gail has been my sounding board almost since the moment we met. It has been amazing having a friend who I knew would always be there. I saw the same kind of relationship forged between Sarah and Jen over slices of pizza before we said our goodbyes.
Amidst the beauty of San Francisco and the majesty of Lake Tahoe, 4 strong women with from different backgrounds and generations came together, shared, and came away with a huge appreciation for the power of friendship and the importance of womanhood.
Pictured: Jennifer Weiman, Gaylen Tips, Sarah Symm, Nellie Symm Gruender