Making friends is a lot easier when you’re in school or working; you have a built-in network from which to choose your peeps. Making friends as a stay-at-home mom isn’t quite so simple, but I’ve managed to do it, and do it well (if I can say so myself; my friends are freaking AWESOME and AMAZING, and I think it speaks highly of me that they’re my friends).
When I lived in Arizona, my BFF was Angela. We met at a MOMS Club get-together and bonded over our large families (both of which included then-2yo twins), messy houses, and love of Grey’s Anatomy. We were the only somewhat-crunchy moms in Yuma, Arizona. I am not exaggerating. I literally never saw a cloth diaper until I bought one online and it arrived at my house, and I remember the first time I saw a mom wearing her baby in an Ergo because I’d never seen anything like it before. I chased her down and asked her all about it. She was not a local mom (duh, because Angela and I would have known her) but was stopping at a restaurant in Yuma while traveling between Phoenix and San Diego.
When we moved here — thank gawd, after almost three torturous years — I vowed I would find crunchy friends. I knew that in a big city I could suss out the granola from the Count Chocula and be discerning.
Although Charlotte has a large homeschooling community, I am not friends with many homeschool moms. As I’ve mentioned, they bring the crazy like never before — recently there was a discussion on a Yahoo homeschooling group started by a woman who objected to a post about homeschool yoga class because it’s a Buddhist tradition and therefore it’s the devil’s exercise. She preferred posts about camp to “teaching your child to give testimony for Jesus Christ as a war against the many many evils in this world (like yoga).” Again, not exaggerating.
Most of my friends are birth related — they’re natural birth supporters either personally or professionally or both.
I met them by being totally NOT discerning, and saying yes to everything. At least, everything crunchy.
La Leche League? YES.
A local screening of The Business of Being Born? DEFINITELY.
Trying out for “Birth” by Karen Brody after learning about it at the local screening of The Business of Being Born? ABSOLUTELY.
Attending monthly Holistic Moms Night Out at various restaurants that served food I hate because I don’t really enjoy “ethnic” food where “ethnic” means “includes spices more intense in flavor than a teensy bit of sea salt”? SURE!
Local doula group meetings? CERTAINLY.
I learned this tactic from my mom. When my dad first asked my mom on a date, a million and a half years ago, she wasn’t very excited. She told her friends that she was going out on a date with him. Her friends said — and I’m paraphrasing — a collective, “meh.” To which my mom shrugged and said, “It’s better than nothing.”
Eating food I hated? Listening to moms whose husbands insist they nurse using a cover? Being onstage? These were all things I didn’t enjoy (other than being on stage. I liked the attention.) But it was better than sitting home with My Chemical Romance, wishing I had friends.
I knew, I just knew, my friends were out there, and I’d probably find them if I just looked around.
So, get off your computer — although reading my blog is an excellent choice if you’re going to sit in front of the computer and be anti-social — and go to the babywearers meeting and make friends! Or the Overeaters Anonymous meeting, or the Weight-Loss Surgery Support Group, or the Moms of Multiples meeting — all places I’ve made friends. Go find your people.
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