As a new mom, making time for yourself is tough. But making time for your friends… this can seem daunting! Before I became a mom, I will admit that I secretly judged my mommy friends that just “disappeared” from social existence once baby was born. I promised myself that I would not become one of these lost souls when it was my turn. After Ms. P was born I forced myself to get out of the house, and socialize with her and without. Not only has this helped maintain my connections with friends, it also continues to help my mental health!
Being a mom has been the most awesome adventure in my life, but I can also feel secluded. If I am being truthful, it will always be easier to skip out on a gathering with friends than to rally Ms. P and all her stuff. Despite this, I try my best to be strategic and plan outings that work well with her eating/napping schedule. However, I will admit it, there are times when Ms. P isn’t being the most cooperative! I would rather risk ridicule and be “that” mom, then risk a meltdown in public.
Thankfully, my friends are supportive and understanding, and range from singles to married with adult children. I also have developed new friendships with the moms and dads in our baby class. Each friendship brings value to my life, and has made me a better mom. With my single friends, I can be my most carefree self and catch up on what is actually hip and cool in pop culture and fashion. With my new mom friends, I can bounce ideas off of them and get feedback as to Ms. P’s developmental milestones and behaviors. From my friends with adult children, I can get confirmation and support for the decisions I am making as a parent.
Reaching out, asking questions, and maintaining a sense of self beyond motherhood makes my friends invaluable to me! So for all you other new moms out there, make time to keep the connections alive. Another added benefit to staying socially engaged is that Ms. P is a very happy, social baby. She likes car rides, being around new people, and seems to go with the flow easily. So, although it may be tough to coordinate, and sometimes it just won’t work out, you will be happy you did it in the end. For me, the benefits I receive from my friendships have far out weighed any hassles in coordination.
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And if that isn’t enough to get you out and about…being social will keep you from wearing your stretchy pants every day of the week☺