When you’re a young mother, there is already a level of anxiety that comes with your baby bump. Instead of getting the “Awe congratulations! When are you due?” from strangers, you get the eyebrow raises, looks of pity/disgust, or my personal favorite, “You’re pregnant? But you’re just a baby yourself! I thought you were like 14!” Pregnancy isn’t easy when you could pass for a high schooler (or if you actually are a teen mom), as I experienced first hand. It’s awkward going shopping, it’s awkward going to the doctors, it’s awkward when you announce you’re expecting. From start to finish there is people whispering behind your back (whether they approve or not) and it couldn’t be any more obvious.
I thought when Genevieve was born things would get easier. I figured oh, maybe pushing a stroller will make me appear older and portray my maturity a bit better. Nope. I can’t count on one hand how many times I have heard high school students gasping when I walked by with Evie in tow in the stroller that it was a “real baby” (versus the doll from home-ec class) and “She’s the cheer coach? I thought she was a student!”. How many times I have been asked if I needed a hall pass or what I was doing outside the cafeteria during lunch hour as I checked some items out of the athletic cage during school hours. People introduce me and it comes out that I have a daughter and the same old, “What! I would have never guessed. You look so young!” comes out. Buying some baby supplies when Evie isn’t with me and I am asked if I need a gift certificate.
You get the idea, I don’t need to continue.
Anyway, I am so thankful to have met some really amazing people working at the bakery when I first moved to Minnesota. They have become some great friends and we always had a blast at work, and outside of work. I still hangout with most of them; we go running, shopping, to concerts, yoga, etc. However- none of them have kids. Which is fine! Each and every one of them are always super supportive and excited when Evie is around, or if I can’t do something because she has to come first they understand. Venting about baby stuff is always encouraged, and they are the first to ask for updates or compliment on how big she is getting or what new skill she has mastered.
My mom and I have gotten extremely close since Evie has been here since she is the first I call to ask a question, get an opinion, or just share excitement. But I miss having someone my age that can identify with what I am feeling or doing, and as much as I love my mom, she can’t. She has encouraged me to go out and “make friends”, but I have been so content with my little circle from the bakery and coaching that I haven’t done so. But, I finally got brave.
There was a mom roughly my age (from what I guesstimated via pictures) that I met online (I know it sounds sketchy but hear me out) through Care.com when I was starting to look for a Nanny for Evie. She was moving up to the Minnesota in December and had a daughter just under a year old herself. After thorough Facebook stalking I messaged her back and we started to chat. Unfortunately, I didn’t need child care until the summer so she ended up taking another job but I reached out because I know how lonely it is moving to a new place and not really having a way to meet friends such as school or work.
We finally ended up going to lunch a few weeks ago and I couldn’t have been more nervous. Will it be awkward? Will we have stuff to talk about? What if I seem to eager or excited? Will we have things in common? What if her kid and my kid don’t get along? Can kids that young even really not like other people? What if Evie throws a fit and I can’t control her, will she think I am a bad mom? I swallowed my fear, drove to TGI Fridays, and got out of the car.
It was the best decision I made in a long time.
We hit it off great! Honestly, it felt like I have known her forever. The list of things we have in common is ridiculous. Our age. The age of our boyfriends. The general age of our kids. Our pregnancy journeys. Our birth stories. Living away from family. Living with our boyfriend’s family. Breastfeeding. Wanting to be a stay at home mom. Wanting a big family. Being new to Minnesota. Not really wanting to finish college, but knowing part of us still wants to. Trying to buy a house in the Fall. Stressors of living with another family while trying to parent. Not having any “mom” friends close by.
You get the idea- it is insane how alike we are. It is such a breath of fresh air and relief to finally have someone who is literally going through damn near the exact same thing as me. I don’t feel crazy when I vent about little things, because she gets it! Just like when she needs to vent, I get it!
Felicity (her daughter) and Evie had another play date just yesterday where we walked to the park and just sat in the shade for a solid three hours. Three.
Who does that? Who on the planet is content with just sitting, watching your kid crawl through the grass? Who?
I’ll tell you who.
Moms. Moms that can finally be in like company and relax.
When Evie got fussy and needed a nap, we walked back home and I put her down and we continued to just hangout over lunch. It was awesome.
One mom friend: Check.
Needless to say, it feels really good to start meeting people I can really identify with, and that Evie can socialize with. Makes me continue to look forward to life here in Minnesota with my little family!