Becoming a mom brings about some of the most unexpected changes. We see how most mothers end up not only accepting these changes but even happily embracing them because really, who ever said that they have to be bad? Sometimes, changes bring about the most unexpected blessings!
One such blessing is the discovery of wonderful new friendships formed through none other than our very own children. Who would have thought that having kids would lead to so many amazing friendships?
While these new relationships are in no way meant to discredit or replace the tried and tested bonds of your high-school gang, or whichever group of friends you have come to rely on through thick and thin, pre and post kids, they certainly do make the adventures of motherhood even more fun.
Do you remember those days as a new mom and before preschool when you were trying to figure out a way to find “friends” for your one and only?
Suddenly, your old elementary schoolmate whom you had barely spoken to in the last 15 years was your new text mate! Why? Because both your children were in the same age group and best of all, she lived two streets away. Perfect! Meet your “Play Date Mommy Friend.”
In the beginning, you may stand awkwardly around each other, waiting to be offered a seat or a cookie, but soon, you’ll literally be right at home in her house, just as you will be in your newfound friendship.
For every “happy times” mommy friend, there’s also a “Support System” friendship that develops from desperate calls of help that only a fellow mother, in the same boat at that particular time, can give. This bond is created over 3 a.m. hormone-filled text messages (usually in the first few weeks of nursing) that no girls’ nights out up to the same hour can match.
It is followed by shared recipes and tips for enhanced “production” and anecdotes with humor that only you two can appreciate.
Long after those trying nights are over, the trust and support you shared serve as a solid foundation for you to open up to each other on challenges in other aspects of your life.
Then of course there are your fellow “Cheerleader” mommy friends. No, I don’t mean short skirts and pompoms (though that’s not a bad idea). Rather, I mean the group of ladies you sit with in the benches as you watch and cheer for your child as she swims from one end of the pool to the other or cringe as she wreaks havoc inside the ballet studio to the dismay of the hapless teacher.
Most kids’ classes last only for an hour, sometimes even less, and if you have the time or can include it in your schedule, try staying throughout these classes. It is truly such a delight to watch your child learning and honing a new skill as you bond over a newly discovered shared passion with the mom sitting next to you.
From extracurricular activities, we move on to school. You can never run out of new friends to meet in your child’s school. One way or another, you’re sure to bump into a “School Mom Friend”—whether in school Christmas programs or while waiting together after having been called to a meeting with the principal (uh-oh) or to pick up your child.
Not all these new “Mommy friendships” have motherhood as a common denominator. People such as your OB and your child’s pediatrician come into your life to help you in a professional capacity but may, in fact, become lifelong personal family friends as well.
Those nine months leading to the birth of your new life can be full of excitement while for other moms, full of medical challenges. Either way, your OB’s support is vital during this time and it would be so sad to simply wave your doctor away and out of your life as soon as she delivers your baby. Your doc just helped you have the biggest blessing of your life, which friend can claim that?
Then of course, there’s your child’s pediatrician. Better choose the right one from the very beginning because this is going to be your partner in your child’s health care for a long, long time. Imagine years of countless frantic midnight calls and monthly visits—soon you’ll probably find a dear friend behind that doctor’s suit. And if you are fortunate enough to do so, then no doubt, those years of doctors’ visits and appointments will be a much more enjoyable task.
Of course in this case, it is important to remember that being a friend to the patient/patient’s mom is not part of the job description. What really matters is your and your child’s health and development and how well it is taken cared of by your chosen OB/pediatrician.
The most exciting and fun friend you’ll meet in the adventures of motherhood, though, is that little sweetheart who has been right by your side since the beginning. Admittedly, the first few years are really more of adoration on your part. But as the years go by and she/he starts to communicate and interact, you’ll find that there’s never a dull moment when you are together and there’s probably no one else you’d rather spend most of your time with than your nonstop little chatter. Isn’t it such fun to watch your “best-friend-to-be” growing up right in front of your eyes?
But a quick word of advice: Remember that you are first and foremost, a parent. There must always be a clear line that your “friendship” should never cross in order to maintain respect and authority.
And since we’re at this point now, we can’t forget our other half, if you can still recognize him! Suddenly, he has been transformed into your daughter’s fairy tale prince charming or your son’s favorite invincible superhero. The best part about your “Hubby Friend”? The fact that you get to share the experience the joys of raising your little angels with each other. Plus, the fact that he is genuinely interested to hear every single detail of your stories about your children! Now you can keep talking without worrying that you’re boring the other person.
Last but not the least is “Mother Dearest.” Yes, you read it right. Once upon a time, mom was cast very clearly in the role of “mom” and nothing more. But upon becoming a mother yourself, it’s amazing how the way you see your own mother also changes. Suddenly, you see the sacrifices she had to make.
You learn to appreciate the many small things you took for granted or perhaps never even noticed before. Patience comes more easily to you as you are finally able to step into her big shoes and the dawn of understanding allows you to see your mom for the person she truly is. And lucky for you, she’s the best friend you’ll ever have. I know mine is.