photo by olivia boone
In the months after Henry was born, one of the last things I was ever prepared for happened, I lost my best friend. No, she didn't die. We just had an ugly fight and were unable to resolve it. (So Jr. High, right? What else can I say.)
In the last year, I have come to find that friend loss for new mothers is... kind of common? My friend Meg just send over this well written piece on embrace release, and I think it is so helpful, I have to share it here. For soon to be parents, new ones and long time ones. And importantly, non parents. Oh how I can relate:
Friends were excited with us when the baby was an idea, a distant future reality symbolized by an absurd hump on my front, his wants and needs and bodily fluids managed quietly by my trusty uterus. I think we imagined that hazy future reality to include plenty of hanging out at friends’ houses, festival-going, and lazy afternoons at the park, throughout which the baby would giggle and stumble around happily while we caught up on our social lives.....
And then on to:
But when our son arrived and new parenthood was nothing like the dopey feel-good fantasy we imagined, when he didn’t sleep longer than two to three hour stretches for his entire first year... I unconsciously shrank inside of our house, vaguely assuming we would emerge one day when things were easier, when we felt more in control and better rested, to find our friendships intact and waiting.
And confirming some of my suspicions:
The Offbeat Mama commenters who gloated about how they take there babies any and everywhere? They have easy babies. Lucky them. I know those exist because our second one turned out that way.
Release yourself and your friends from the bondage of naive expectations, defunct plans, and the starry-eyed fantasies of yore. None of you knew what to expect pre-baby, maybe least of all your friends. Change is hard and can be painful for everyone. But in this case, for you at least, it is infinitely worth it.