making mom friends
One of the hardest things I’ve ever had to do was make mom friends. I am being very deliberate about not just saying friends, because a mom friend is very specific. A mom friend is someone you can go through motherhood with. A mom friend is an ally, a confidant, an ear, and a fellow soldier in the trenches.
I was one of the first to have a baby in my friend circle. I knew nothing about babies, or baby things. Out of sheer luck, a childhood friend, who had already had a baby, moved back to our hometown, where I still lived, and she walked me through what it felt like to be a mother. She drove me to the big box baby store and showed me all of the things that I would need. She helped me to understand the vast transition that I was about to go through. And even with her being so kind, generous of her time and thorough, I still was not prepared for what motherhood would feel like to me.
Not gonna lie, this transition was rough. My son came into the world via emergency c-section, he was 2 weeks old when we move to another county, my husband started a new job, my parents moved in with us, being a first time mom was not what I was expecting and I for sure had postpartum depression. We went through a huge upheaval in our lives. I was suddenly in a new place, living another life and had no friends.
I don’t know how I managed to do this, but I gave myself a mission: to find mom friends. I joined every mom group I could find nearby. I went to every parent and child class that I could attend. I saw other moms, saw how they interacted with their babies, and I talked and asked a ton of questions. These groups helped me become more comfortable in my role as a mother, helped me feel more comfortable in my new community, helped our new multigenerational family become better acclimated.
These groups were a blessing. And while I did not make the type of mom friends that I was looking for at that time, you know, the fellow Mamacitas that would day drink with me at the park while we shit talked about the crazy things our kids did, the groups were a wonderful resource.
My son is almost 6 and I have a second child now. My close friends did eventually start having kids and I did eventually find a mom friend group in my new community. My world has grown immensely. And while I have always said that I am not good at making new friends, I proved to myself during one of the hardest times in my life, that I can. That I could. That I did.
What was your experience making mom friends?
Do you think having mom friends is important?
What do you think the benefits of having a mom friend group have been for you?
Would love to hear from you!
Post-birth, the unmentionables
I love being pregnant. I feel healthy, strong and vibrant. I’m that mom that takes a weekly picture of her bump, publishes it as a pregnancy journal, and then prominently displays it on a shelf in the living room for anyone to look through. I love the changing, ever-growing bump and everything else it ripens with it. It’s getting the kid out of me that is problematic. I’ve had 2 c-sections and right after them, it feels like a death and a birth all at once. The person I was, the body I had inhabited is gone. The baby I hold in my arms and this new body that I share, granted, in a very awkward way, have to be nursed into being. The baby and my body change over the course of the year. Each becoming independent, beautiful, whole again.
My moms version of the sex talk was threatening me to not get pregnant or else, or calling me a whore when I came home too late in my very early 20’s and because of this, there were so many things I didn’t know. I read so much about parenting, a little about giving birth, and nothing regarding post birth.
My big generalization for this week is that our mothers did not prepare us for any aspect of the birthing process because it was considered indecent and probably gross to speak about anything related to women’s bodies. It’s getting better, but women are still embarrassed to speak to each other candidly about these experiences.
What do you wish someone had told you about the postpartum experience?
I wish someone would have told me that having a baby was going to make me a better version of me. I’m stronger, more patient, kinder, more efficient, more determined.
Do you think motherhood has made you better?
Did your mother speak candidly to you about any aspect of the birth experience? Making the baby, housing the baby, birthing the baby, being with the baby?
Would love to hear from you!
Wendy writes blog posts that turn into conversations for the Mamá Cita Podcast.