Motherhood seems to make it nearly impossible to keep and make friends. It’s not that old friends aren’t still amazing. But if they don’t have children, it can be hard to find any common ground. Chances are non-parents and single women don’t find discussions about teething and diapers very interesting.
Furthermore, friends without children appear to be under the impression that new parents are too busy to go out and have fun. Invitations to hit the town for drinks, try a new restaurant or cruise the mall with girlfriends just dry up. I’ve noticed my child-free friends include me in their plans pretty infrequently these days. I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t jealous when I hear about how much fun they have in my absence.
I often remind myself that my life is much more fulfilling now that I have my beautiful daughter. And she certainly does keep me busy. Between caring for my baby girl and working full time, it is true that I have very little spare time. But that just makes social time spent with friends even more valuable. Yes, happy hour really can be a sanity-saving necessity.
It’s easy to say I’ll just start spending more time with other mothers. However, I worry that if I admit to other moms that I do need friends and a little time away from my family, I’ll be judged for not feeling like my daughter and husband completely fulfill my life. All the other mothers I know seem so content and satisfied caring for their children and spending time with their husbands. I don’t want to be the one person who needs more.
Recently, however, I decided it’s time to get out there and start socializing. The online “Savannah moms” group I’m a member of is having a potluck recipe party Wednesday, and I accepted an invitation. I’m actually a little nervous. I’ve been thinking for days about what dish I’ll prepare and bring, which outfit to wear and whether to arrive right on time or show up a few minutes late so I’m not the first person to the party.
Obsessing over details is probably a little silly, but I feel like this could be a good opportunity to meet a nice group of women with whom I have some things in common. Truth be told, though, I hope there will be just as much talk about good television shows, shoe-shopping and tasty local restaurants as there is discussion of teething and diapers.
Hollie Moore Barnidge is the managing editor for the Coastal Courier in Hinesville.