My little friend magnet.

So, I am really comfortable in my professional world – throw me in a room with a bunch of producers and I can talk and talk and talk…and talk.

But, the mom circle has been one that I don’t find myself as comfortable in, mainly because I work full-time and to be perfectly honest, my nanny is more dialed in to what is going on in my neighborhood for Ellie than I am.  Our morning or evening conversations frequently start with sentences like, “Oh, Gaby’s mom said that there is a great activity at the nature center” or “I was texting with Mena’s mom and she said…”.

You get the picture.

Not only does it kill me that I can’t logistically go to all of these activities with Ellie, and that I don’t know who most of these friends are.  It makes me fast forward to conversations when Ellie is in her teens that will sound something like, “Who is Gaby? I don’t even know Gaby.  You aren’t going to the movies alone with someone that I have never met before.”  And it all drives me crazy because I can’t be everywhere all of the time.

And so my solution is to stop trying to find a husband and start trying to find a way to clone myself.

Kidding.

My family would hate that.  And Ellie’s love of two mommies would likely be short-lived too.

But the frustration of not being there all the time, is compounded by this weird nanny envy I have because she is networking with all of these neighborhood moms, and I want neighborhood mom friends.  (yes, I am whining a little).  And this weekend I read an article in Huffington Post Parents by Devon Corneal, With Friends Like These, where she discusses how she was at a party this past weekend and she didn’t find a single person whose connection to her friend wasn’t based on her children.

And my jealousy grew.  So much of my social life continues to be founded in my profession, which is important because I am able to maintain my own identity, keep a roof over our heads, and grow my career.

But I still want mom friends.

So in Ellie’s Saturday music class, I was pleased to find a lot of cool parents that seem to be in line with my approach to parenting, and are carefree enough to dance around like fools so that our kids can appreciate the arts.

On the first demo class, Ellie gravitated toward one little girl that was about her age, and I gravitated toward her mom. Our girls sat/stood near each other and shared/stole musical instruments from each other and I got alone well with mom.  And I decided she should be my friend.  At the end of the class, we were all discussing which Saturday time slot to sign-up for, 930am or 1030am, and the mom that I’d been sitting next to was wavering between time slots.

And all of the sudden I felt like a high school girl with a crush.  I started thinking, Please choose the 930am slot, please choose it, the girls can be friends, we can talk about mom stuff…please choose the same time slot as me.

And then I started thinking…I am totally pathetic.  This woman would think I am totally crazy if she knew what I was thinking, but I just want to be part of a mom community as well as a professional community.

And that’s what it is.  I can work full-time and come home and do everything in my power to be fully present for Ellie.  But to exist equally in both of those circles is nearly impossible…but just because it’s nearly impossible, doesn’t mean I am not going to try.

Thankfully the mom friend chose the same time slot, and a couple weeks ago she asked me where I got my hair cut and I thought, she likes me!  she really likes me! (or maybe she just likes my hair)

And this past Saturday, after Ellie open-mouth kissed her daughter for the fourth time, I got up the courage to ask if we could exchange information and set up a play date sometime.  I still felt like a high school girl with a crush, but thankfully she happily gave me her card and I gave her mine.

Ellie and I went to the park, came home and had a nice lunch and took a nap, and when I woke up I received one of the coolest texts someone has sent me in a while.  It read:

Hey Cara. It’s XXX from music class.  I went to friend you on Facebook and saw your website and blog posts and they are awesome!  The baby went down for a nap and I have loved reading them!  See you next week.

I was genuinely excited about the compliment, and I went right back to feeling like a teenager all over again.  And it gave me the energy to clean to kitchen.  (If you had been able to see my kitchen, you would understand why this is such a big deal).

So I realized in order to make new mom friends, I need to do what I have done for so many other things – just put myself out there, literally and figuratively.

(No, Mom.  I will not apply this to dating.  No Auntie Donna, there aren’t any single dads in the class.”

 

 

9 Comments

  1. Jen says: February 14, 2012 • 03:25:47

    Thanks for sharing! I am also having a hard time finding mom friends, but maybe I am focused too much on finding a friend who is also a mom, rather than a mom who could be a friend.

    Reply

    • Cara Lemieux says: February 14, 2012 • 20:26:01

      Friends are soooooo important…both from before baby and post baby…I think it’s vital to remember where we came from, and have someone that can understand where we are going.

      Reply

  2. robin messing bogdanoff says: February 14, 2012 • 02:56:27

    The best advice I ever received shortly after my daughter was born was from one of my college roommates. We were talking how hard it was, in this new chapter, to find new friends, good friends, friends we would love for who they were, not what they did. She told me that we HAVE to have mommy friends — but we don’t have to like them. It’s a different friendship, a different support system. It was enormously freeing not to have to worry about whether or not I liked someone new — and in time, some of those earliest mommy friends are now the ones I love most with all my heart.

    Reply

    • Cara Lemieux says: February 14, 2012 • 03:04:42

      Thanks for the thoughts Robin! It is so great to know that every single thing I have experienced has been survived by someone that has come before me.

      Reply

  3. Tracey says: February 2, 2012 • 01:31:43

    It’s a good thing I’ll be a mom in a few weeks!!

    Reply

  4. Judy Wallace says: February 1, 2012 • 01:22:34

    Cara, I completely understand especially being an older first time Mom. I remember one of my first trips to the playground with Madelyn. Two Moms that were already there engrossed in conversation while their little ones played and kindly included Maddie in while I sat around looking like a sad sack. Since I too had no Mom friends at that time I decided to take the bull by the horns. I boldly went up to the two Moms and introduced myself and they were very receptive. So we all chatted for a bit and they started complaining about their husbands and how long they’d been married and how much longer it actually seemed (They were married 3 & 5 years). They then asked if I was married and how long. When I told them 26 years they shrieked!!! They stared at Maddie trying to figure out whether I was her grandmother or Mother. I confirmed I was her Mom and they stared at me as if I was a freak and said “How OLD ARE YOU?” so I told them and they just said OHHHH… and since I was their Mothers age (which they happily shared with me), they decided they did not want to talk any more. I have since developed a much more keen sense of non judgmental moms not only accepting but quite interested in hearing what they can obviously determine was probably a long journey. I have been blessed with a few extremely wonderful Mom who have now become some of my dearest friends who we are all attached to. As a matter of fact on one occasion (after being friends for 5 years) when I began talking about my trip to China one of them asked why did you go to China? It was the best compliment ever that she forgot that Madelyn was adopted. I hope you too find friends just like that!!

    Reply

    • Cara Lemieux says: February 3, 2012 • 17:19:19

      Thanks for the thoughts Judy! My neighborhood looks to be a wealth of moms with the same vibe as me…I just need them to stop hanging out with their husbands on the weekends and play with Ellie and I. Or I need them to invite us over, and have their husbands invite their friends… :-) Love and miss you!

      Reply

      • Cheryl says: February 6, 2012 • 01:03:38

        or have their husbands invite their SINGLE friends!

        Reply

  5. Katie says: January 30, 2012 • 20:55:44

    Nice work my friend! I have found moms the hardest people to become friends with! Especially those with older siblings than the kids that share a birth year with mine, it’s as if they already have all the mom friends they need! Proud of you!

    Reply

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