This past weekend, we went to a little get together with some friends. We have all been friends a loooong time. Friends who've known each other since we were all single people. Before the kids. Before the hips started to spread and the boobs headed south. We used to be the kind of people who would close down the bars. Now we think we're rebels when we close down the zoo at 6pm. It always cracks me up when we get together, how much all of our lives have changed. Now, we are all somebody's mom, somebody's wife. The conversations all used to revolve around "us" and where we got our hair cut, what kind of new makeup we were wearing, who was running a big sale on bikinis. (I think we'd all rather die now than show our stretch marked stomachs and c-section scars in bikinis!) Now it's all about our kids. Who's pregnant. Who's kid is sitting up. Who's kid has reflux and which store is running a special on diapers. It's a different life. We do occasionally sit back and laugh at ourselves and wonder how in the world we all became so monumentally uncool. In stark contrast, our husbands haven't changed at all. They still sit around and talk about what will happen when they hit the big time and become rock stars (like that's ever going to happen!)
Even though we don't all get together all that often, I love it when we do. I always come home realizing that I am not the worst mother in the world and everyone else is just like me! There is something cathartic about all sharing our shortcomings as mothers that makes us feel united and boosts our self esteem. Because learning that you are not the only mom who totally loses it every now and then, is a little comforting. Here are some things I learned from our little moms get together.
*We all hate the mom who does the count to three thing. As in... "You better get your clothes put on by the time I count to three! One... Two... Two and a half... Don't test me on this... Two and three quarters...Don't make me say three..." Yep- she bugs the crap out of us.
* We are all guilty of throwing our kids the elbow when they won't get in the carseat. You know, when they get completely stiff and just slide out the bottom of the seat when they don't want to get in? We all admit to giving them a good elbow right in the hip to bend them into submission so you can strap those little rascals in. (And no- this does not hurt them- just forces them to fold in half like a greeting card!)
* We are all much nicer in public than in private. When our kids stand up in the front of the cart while we're checking out at the grocery and the freaked out old lady behind you starts screaming, "Miss! Miss! Your baby is about to jump out of the cart!" We will scoop him up and hug him and say, "Oh sweetie! Be careful! You'll hurt yourself!" and then you love all over him. However- when you get to the car you start going all psycho on him and say, "Don't you ever do that again. You hear me!" Because we are all secretly thinking that if they actually do jump out of the car that they will make us look bad and we will totally lose face in front of the whole grocery store!
* Us stay-at-home moms are all guilty of yapping our husband's heads off from the moment they come in the door because we are starved for adult conversation.
* About 50% of the time we would be more than happy to cash in our stay-at-home mom status for a job where no one would drool, poop, wipe boogers or puke on you.
* We all go to bed feeling guilty that we are not doing a good job raising our kids.
* We are all delusional to think that at 5:00 when the significant other comes home that we will actually be able to turn the children over to him and we can have a moment to just breathe or go to the bathroom in peace. It somehow never works out this way and we think to our selves that maybe said significant other would have been just as useful if they had stayed at work. Somehow, though, we develop amnesia about this and the next day we conjure up the grand delusion all over again. I am going to call it the 4 pm delusion.
* The other thing that happens at 4pm is the great clean up. It is this mad rush to make the place look at least somewhat tidy and organized before the spouse comes home. That way said spouse will think you worked hard and were efficient all day. (Never tell him you bribed the children with candy to get them to pitch in!)
* We all say that we are going to get together more often. Somehow it never happens because the reality is that it is a whole lot of effort to peel of one's sweatsuit ensemble, shower, fix hair, scrub and dress dirty children, find clean underwear in the massive pile of laundry, pack up the diaper bag and actually drive across town to get together. Shew- it makes me tired just thinking about it.
* We will almost all admit to not really liking babies. It sounds bad, but I like children way better when they are toddlers and a little bit more independent. I am not a fan of walking around with a baby attached to all various parts of my body all day long. My mom told me when I was in high school that she liked me so much better as a school aged kid than when I was a baby. At the time, I let that hurt my feelings and now I totally get it.
* We all agree that we respect our moms so much more now that we have our own children.
* Not one of us would trade any of our kids for all the gold and riches in the world. However, being tempted with our pre-baby bodies, pre-baby sleep and social schedules and pre-baby sex lives may make us consider a barter.
* We all agree that talking about the challenges of motherhood are taboo and somehow make you seem like you love your children less. That is just complete bull to me. I love my kids more than anything but will be the first to admit that they will completely be the death of me.
All in all, though, being a part of the 'mom club' is probably my favorite club I've ever been in. But some days it sure would be nice if I could find someone else to be the president of this club and I could just be a household member at-large!