A friend of mine recently posed the question “Do you feel motherly towards your friend’s kids?” I responded with a quick no, and said it was because she was more of a natural mother than I am. I believe this to be true, however on reflection I did spend a fair portion of that day caring for her young toddler and making sure he was ok. She was there, she could have done it, but instinct takes over and you just do parent/care for each other’s kids without thinking about it! This got me thinking….
I so enjoy my single childless friends. They are the ones with the time to share with me, the ones who remember to check in most frequently and the ones who still see me as a person outside of my domestic roles.
That said, during the long summer holidays with the kids, it is my mummy tribe that see me through and save my sanity! Why is it that these are the friends who seem undervalued, when they are the ones who carry me through the harder times?
These are the mums who spend countless hours at playgrounds with us, the ones who help deal with tantrums and toileting issues and remembered to bring sunscreen when you forgot. They are always there to catch any one of our kids when they fall, negotiate battles between our children and bring enough snacks for a small army.
I appreciate our weekly catch up’s, never more so than in the school holidays. I love that I know I can count on you to show up, just as exhausted as I am and try and wrangle our children together. I love that you understand the silences and don’t find them awkward, as we just enjoy a moment’s peace with some caffeine. I appreciate that I can check my phone and not offend you because you also are desperate to respond to that email or whatever.
Thank you for showing up in the hard times, even if it is just because you have to, for your own sanity! I know I am just as important to you as you are to me. You watch my kids while I pee and I watch yours while you make that important phone call. Thank you for never judging me, my parenting or my kids and understanding we are all just doing the best we can to get by.
Thank you for sharing great child friendly deals, vouchers and places with me and filling our days, because you understand how hard it is to be home alone with the children all day. I don’t thank you enough. You are my tribe and just like in the wild, we come together as female animals and raise the kids together. It takes a village and all that. You guys are my village! I imagine it like a net of hands being held underneath our kids; while the children play on top, and there is always room for one more. Instinctively we come together, maybe we don’t literally hold hands, (although I am open to this ladies!! Haha ) but we support one another and make room and time for one another without question. It’s a beautiful thing!
The reasons though, that I don’t appreciate you enough is because we spend so much time supporting each other that we don’t spend enough time connecting with each other. I’m sorry for that. Our conversations are so crowded with the kids, our domestic lives and struggles that there isn’t much time spent on really getting to know you as people outside of these roles the way I do with my childless friends.
At a time when I am most socially occupied with you all, every day for 2 months on end, I often notice I feel loneliest. I wonder if you feel the same way. Are we merely using each other as coping mechanisms instead of valuing each other and connecting? The potential is there, and I vow to explore that some more. I promise to talk to you more about your interests and hobbies instead of your meal plans and budget. I vow to put down my phone and fill those silences with connection rather than caffeine. I vow to still hold your hand, but also hold your heart.
Thank you for being my tribe, but more than that, thank you for being my friends. I look forward to getting to know you all better.
Your Best Friend ForNever