There are few things as important to a mom as a good friend, particularly a good friend with a child close in age. She can fully appreciate your child’s tantrums (and your sure-to-be-rational responses to them) and your husband’s stupidity. She is savvy enough to never mention any of your husband’s shortcomings in front of him. She is up at 7:00 in the morning when you need to vent about your hellish night, and she’s willing to take your kid so you can get a night out. She comes over to keep you company and run errands with you when your husband has been out of town for four days and you’re dying for adult company. And, most importantly, she still likes you after all of this.
I wasn’t sure that I needed “mom” friends when Robbie was first born; I already had a nice selection of friends. Surely they could understand when Robbie had an explosive diaper or threw up in the middle of the mall. And I’m sure they do understand, but it’s on a different level. A mom friend not only understands but is equipped to deal with these potential disasters. She has extra wipes and doesn’t squirm when she gets covered in poop or vomit while trying to help. She has food and toys in her bag when you run out of the house without anything. And she doesn’t judge you when that happens more than once.
Find these friends and hold on to them! When I think about the past year with Rebecca, Anne, and Cathy, I’m not sure how I would have survived without them. We took our kids to see Santa together, and they were prepared when Robbie vomited an entire bottle all over the mall sitting area. They invited Robbie and me over for meals when Justin was out of town, and I was at my wit’s end. They volunteered to come sit with me when Robbie was sick and Justin was in class. Most importantly, they’ve kept me laughing at all the mishaps along the way.
We’re having a joint birthday party for our boys next weekend (they all have close birthdays: 21, 27, 28, and 29 July). While I’m sure the boys will enjoy digging into yet another piece of cake (or pie for Pete, since he doesn’t like cake…), the celebration will really be for us. We’ll celebrate finding each other and surviving our first year. And we’ll celebrate the future — together.
I didn't realize how much I needed mom friends until I had them. That's part of why I love living on a military base so much – all the families have children around the same age and we are all in the same stages of life. Having these friends here for me has totally changed my outlook on motherhood.