Resistance to Mom Friends

I love my friends. I’ve talked before about my friendship landscape and how it’s ever changing with the peaks and seasons of life but one thing that stays consistent is my love for my friends. That being said it’s a hard transition when you start growing up and changing and people start popping out babies. I’ll be honest my friend and I were concerned when the responsible one got pregnant. Who was going to take care of us? Make sure we got home okay? Didn’t go home with strangers? Yes sometimes we needed to be reminded of that! Who was going to be our voice of reason and slap us when we were being ridiculous? Who was going to drive us to get new clothes? Who was going to drive us everywhere? We needed some serious taking care of and she was the best at it. We were incredibly happy for her but selfishly concerned.

She’s super-mom/wife/friend so of course she managed all of her capes just fine. WAY better than I did when I had Rylan.

I was worried when I got pregnant about my changing friendships. I had friends like Super mom who made it look so easy so I knew it was possible but then you have other people (mostly strangers or distant acquaintances) who would make comments like “oh yay join the mom club”, “How great you get to be in the mom groups”, “get as much time with your friends cause then you have to make new mom friends”.  It’s not that I’m antisocial but I’ll be honest I dislike anything that makes me feel limited to one group. I instantly get and attitude of “nope I’m not going”. It’s the same attitude that keeps me away from any of the multilevel marketing groups. I don’t like feeling associated to only one thing. I feel claustrophobic. I feel tied down. I feel like I’m a cow being herded into a trap.

All my friends were super supportive when I got pregnant. It was a shock to everyone because I had always said I didn’t want kids. Sorry Rylan mommy loves you! When she actually came into the world I started to get a sense of the mom group thing. It’s not like the cow herd feeling, its more like a support system of people who have been there. I call super mom all the freaking time. I also had a few other mom friends I’d call, my sister-in-law included. We call her Dr. Jen because that’s how we treated her. Like our own personal on call doctor.

Our other friend is a doctor and I swear the only conversations Pat has with her is when Rylan’s sick. Even now at almost 3. We should really take her out to dinner to say thank you!

Rylan was about 6 months old and I took her to the pool with a group of friends who had kids too. Some around the same age but most were older. We sat them up to take a picture and I was way more confident in Rylans ability to sit up than I should have been because right before we took the picture she tipped over. Smacked her head right on the concrete.

Panic is an understatement. She cried, I cried harder. She was fine after a few minutes and it was the mom friends more than the doctor who made me feel safe that day. I wanted to rush to the emergency room. These girls did the best job of making me feel justified if I took her in but also reassured me that I didn’t have to and she would be fine. They also all shared similar stories to make me feel like I wasn’t alone.

Funny how much it makes you feel better to hear that your friends screwed up too. I know its cause we feel like we aren’t alone but still makes me laugh.

Friend: My kid fell off the couch at that age.

Me: Oh thank goodness.

Not an easy thing to do… making a new panicked mom feel like whatever decision she makes is the right one.  But they did. That’s the power of mom friends.

We didn’t go to the ER. But I did pull over about 12 times on the way home to make sure she was awake and alive. Then woke her up a million times throughout the night. Yes she slept with me that night. Judge away I don’t even care!

Mom friends are there to share stories with. and make you feel better about parenting.  It’s helpful to hear that your fear is also something other people worry about. It feels good to be validated that a mom friend would do the same thing.

Sometimes you just need someone to say its okay to hate your dogs while you kids are young. You need that one friend who can high five you when you call your kid an ass under your breath. The friend who calls from the closet because they are hiding from their kids and its perfect timing because you are head to the grocery store just for some quiet time. Those are the mom friends that count.

I read the book  Women Are Scary  It’s about making new mom friends and its hilarious. I recommend it to all new moms for sure. Sometimes you need something like that because lets face it, women are scary!

So while I was hesitant and leery of it, I’m happy that I have my mom friends. I’m also happy that I haven’t lost my other friends. It’s the beauty of the friendship landscape and its ever-changing ways. I’m also happy and grateful for all my mom friends and their many different parenting ways. One of my favorite things about the mom friends is the lack of judgment. Everyone is all just supporting each other and its fun to watch the different ways people do things. It makes us all better parents and better people

 

 

To Prep or Minimalize?

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That is the question!

I’m not a prepper myself but my coworker Terri is. Its no shock that this debate comes up a lot. I’m trying to be a minimalist, she’s a prepper…. we have lots to talk about.  I’m ultra fascinated by prepping. I have a lot of weird things I get fixated on so just add this to the list. I love the idea of being prepared and after talking to her I am happy that we live close enough to each other that I can crash her house if crap really hits the fan (she hasn’t invited me but I can assure you that’s where we are going).

This is not a new theory. People have been starting to prepare for the worst for sometime now. I’m pretty sure there was a reality show of people who built bunkers for preppers. If not I watch too much reality TV and have imagined it.  You could spend an whole workday on Pinterest getting prepper ideas and tips (not that I have… not the whole day anyway).  Watching the news and thinking about the state of the world makes me want to build my own bunker and start prepping for the worst.  When I think of “the worst” I don’t really think hiding… I think Hunger Games. I should really start running more. At least be able to run to Terri’s house.

So while I’m on my minimalist kick Terri and I have had conversations all around getting rid of things and having a nice clean look and living simply. Terri is much cleaner naturally so I’m sure her house looks great all the time. It’s taking some serious work on my part. But that lead us to the question: Can you prep and stay a minimalist?

Sounds like something on Shark Tank.

How do you do it? How do you live with just your essentials and still stay prepared for a disaster? I guess it depends on what you are prepping for.

Currently Terri is prepping with at home survival in mind. So she’s preparing for power outages and injury care, and being able to stay home and be self sufficient. In a case where everyone is fleeing she’ll be fine staying home for long periods of time. With me, uninvited, showing up on her doorstep. I may have to get some weapons or start stashing cash on my own so we have something to contribute so she’ll let us in. An incentive to help keep us alive.

She’s educated me on some prepping things I would have never thought of. For instance she keeps cases of water in the basement (water bottles) that she rotates through so they don’t go bad down there, but that she’s always fully stocked. Forget Shark Tank lets just fund Terri to figure this out for us! The list of things she has stocked includes gallons of water, cases of the water bottles, canned foods, frozen meats (would only be a problem in the summer, winter we get snow), paper towels and toilet paper, bathroom essentials and a box of paper goods so there’s not need to do dishes. Again add me to your head count Terri! She’s also fully prepared with big rubber maid containers full of first aid supplies band aids, suture kits and a whole other list of things I would not know what to do with. May need more than money for her to let me in.

So she’s got a lot of stuff to store and manage which leads us back to the original question; how do you have a minimalist lifestyle and prep at the same time?

Here’s my thoughts.

If you have a basement or garage or a legit bunker, first let us know where you are so we can head that way during the crap storm. Second, you are pretty much set. You have your basics in your living space and your disaster kits in your storage areas. Then you can make your house nice and minimalistic with only the essentials of everyday non apocalyptic living.  I’ll have to check with Terri but I’d think you would want to plan ahead with that too and make sure you have space if you need to stay in those spots or make sure you can easily get your stash to your living space without dying.

If you don’t have the space there are “minimalist” prepping ideas you can make. You can do “mini prep kits” and keep the essentials you’d need in a large trash can or one of the big totes that store ridiculous Christmas decorations (that’s what we have them for, not sure what the real purpose is). Keep all you can in those so you have a mini prep kit you can keep it behind the garage or find somewhere it fits without being distracting. Also keep in mind the smaller the kit the smaller your survival time and its good to have a plan on what do to when that kit starts to run low. Don’t find Terri though I’ve already called dibs on that prepper.

Keep in mind we are mountain people and have no clue what this would look like for people in the city or in apartments. Also we are not experts or anything and are COMPLETELY unqualified to be considered a “source” of any kind. This is for fun for us because we’ve been talking about it lately. If you die in the zombie apocalypse its not our fault. We wish you luck and may the odds be ever in you favor.

 

Friendship Landscapes

Mom: “who’s your best friend?”

12 yr old me: “I have a few but I don’t think I have a best friend”

At 31…32..no I was right 31 years old I look back at my pre-teen self and am proud. At such a young age I already knew the value of having many friends and the different strengths that came from all the different types of friendships you can benefit from. I thank my mom for that. She always had such a great group of friends around her and really was a great friend herself. She would do anything for anyone and always felt everyone should be included.

I didn’t learn that part until I was at least in high school. We had a close group of friends in elementary school but there was always that one girl who you thought was your friend but didn’t realize until later she was just a mega mean girl. I could do a whole post on that but don’t worry won’t. I recently listened to a podcast I think it was Coffee and Crumbs… I’ll post the link if I can find it, where they talk about friendship landscapes and how certain times in your life that landscape looks different and it’s always changing.

There will be times when you are closer with certain friends more than others or just because life happens you may not talk all the time. Sometimes you are both going through the same thing in life and its easy. Or sometimes one of you is having a baby throwing up with morning sickness while the other is throwing up hung over from an awesome party the night before. Probably not at the peak of the friendship landscape. Doesn’t mean it won’t come back around to being besties taking selfies and crying over a good cup of coffee in the future.

But it doesn’t always work like that. Sometimes friendships really do break apart at the seams. It could be fast like when my dog gets a new stuffed animal and goes savage trying to get to the squeaker, flinging stuffing around and leaving my living room looking like a stuffed animal crimes scene. Those seams my be harder to repair but I will never say anything is impossible.

I could happen incredibly slow to the point where you don’t even really notice until one day you go to call or text but can’t quite figure out why there’s pit in your stomach and a burning behind your eyes. Those are the worst. Because there’s no falling out and nothing to be angry about it’s just… weird. Uncomfortable. It would be better if she did something to cause this feeling. Stole from you, slept with your boyfriend (personal preference but husband is unforgivable to me), or betrayed your trust. That way at least there’s an incident to fall back on  when you start missing them. “that’s right she was such a bitch” could be super helpful in moving on.

But the slow pull apart is painful. It could be for a million different reasons and I don’t have that kind of time or creativity to think of them all but no matter what happens it’s always hard.

Here is a passage that may be something to think about courtesy of JoLynne Whitaker:

“As you grow, your circle will change. This too is part of growth,. Not everyone can go with you. Not everyone should….

Elevation requires separation. Awaiting you at the next level will be new allies, new connects, new friendships, new opportunities to be apart and connect with. Yet, I exhort you to embrace the peace, benefit  and power of a season alone with your Savior.

But one must detach from the ones who cannot see, respect or accept your vision. One must detach from the ones who choose not to grow. This is part and parcel of your walk with Christ; this too is development. Elevation requires separation. Selah 2 Corinthians 6:17”

Yes I got a little Gody. Take what you will from it leave what you don’t. whether you believe or not you can take something about friendship and growing from that passage and I encourage you too.

Yes I’ve personally lost friendships. Not a lot because once I love you I always love you and will always be friendly and nice when I see your hear about you. But I also appreciate the feeling of freedom and growth that comes with letting go. Yes its hard. If it didn’t hurt there’s a lack of caring there for that person, in which case it’s probably a good thing the friendship isn’t on the landscape. But if you cared of course its going to hurt. and that’s okay. That’s good.

Yup leaving you with a super grown up mature quote from….. Whinny The Pooh!

“How lucky am I to have something that makes saying goodbye so hard”. well said Pooh.