Monday, September 26, 2011

On communes... yay or nay?

I miss having friends.

Oh, let me clarify. I have friends. Good friends. But it often feels that I don't. But I do. Get it?

In the last months of my pregnancy with Elliot, I met and became close with another first-time mama. We really hit it off. Em was funny and raunchy and real. We talked about everything, for hours. Her daughter was 6 weeks older than Elliot. She would drop her husband off at work and come over. We'd drink coffee and moan about sleepless nights, poop and breastfeeding woes. Encourage each other. Share triumphs. The kids would lay on the floor and coo. (As Elliot got older and stronger, he'd drag himself over to her, crawl on top and suck her face. She'd cry. We'd laugh and separate them. And repeat.)

We went to mommy and me yoga. Mommy and me swimming. Mommy and me movies. We were always on the go. We both were struggling with postpartum depression. There was always an understanding adult with a shoulder to lean on and tears and laughter to share. We'd move on to wine and cheese in the middle of the day, especially if her husband kept the car and would be picking her up. We went on a week-long trip with the kids, too, on an airplane, even!

After Elliot's first plane ride... 5 mths old
She went back to work at the 1-year mark. All of my other mommy friends did, too. I found myself alone and floundering. So I went back to work, pregnant. In the last stages of Felix's pregnancy, my close friend moved away. I cried. And, though we're still in touch, neither of us really has time for long-distance relationships. The internetz help, but it's not the same as face-to-face.

While pregnant with Felix, I met another mama my age, who was also expecting her second. Her daughter was a bit younger than Elliot. They lived close by. We started hanging out at a local kid-friendly coffee shop. At the playground. Her place. My place. We would gab, the kids would wrestle and play. When my boys got chicken pox, she brought her girls over for one of those controversial Pox Parties. I learned a lot about parenting from her - she was much calmer than me, more dedicated (her kids barely knew what TV was!), they were mostly vegetarian. Very environmentally conscious. They were Good People. I felt I could become a better person, a better friend, by being so close. My identity changed to parallel hers.
Overview of a pox party

Again, there was a move. I still get misty walking by their house. And again, that long-distance thing. I suck.

I have friendship. But what I'm missing could better be described as companionship. Accomplice-ship. Just having another grown up around, all the time or at least frequently, to take the pressure off, to talk with, commiserate and share with. I've withdrawn into myself, into the internet way more than I had previously. While never an extrovert, I'm now bordering on hermit. And I don't feel like exerting the energy needed to make new friends or make the effort with the friends I do have. Going back to school? Terrifies me. There are new people there. I have to make connections. Talk to people. But I'm doing it. Probably the best thing I can do for myself, actually.
Tasty, though inappropriate given this article.
I'm in and out of bad head spaces lately, though I am getting better at recognizing the signs so I'm not blindsided. Still, the thought of joining a commune or cult or becoming a sister wife remains very, very appealing. I wish my sister lived closer. I wish I wasn't so damned dependent on others. I need to snap out of this. I need to get back on the treadmill, literally and figuratively. But wahhhhhhhhh. I don't wanna. I'm too cozy in my little hole. My sister would say, "Suck it up, Buttercup!"

Though maybe it's time to explore the goat-farming commune my friend Kelly seems to have put an awful lot of thought into. She wants to make and sell soap, be self-sustaining on our farm, with the whole village-to-raise-a-child philosophy. Sounds like heaven to me. Where do I sign up?

Then again, maybe I'm just lazy and looking for excuses, and easy way out of trials and tribulation of parenting, life, dishes and growing up. Whatever it is, I need to figure it out.  


Alicia said...

I am RIGHT there with you. Exactly. I miss friendships. It's painful. I have fantasized about sister wives and would totally move into a commune.

Holly said...

I feel the same way a lot of the time, i miss having friends ven though I know I have them. I miss having someone all the time, much like a good bestie.

As for the commune...maybe. I think hanging out is a good first step.

Rainyday said...

***Alicia*** ***Holly****
Hugs coming attcha! And thanks for getting it.

Elizabeth - Flourish in Progress said...

I hear ya!!! My closest friends do not live in my state and sometimes, the urge to just see them for a quick lunch or even just a drop by is so overwhelming, I get sad and don't know what to do with myself!!

I know that they will never live here and I don't have a choice to live there, so we are stuck...missing each other.

Rainyday said...

Yep. Most of our friends have moved to the Nation's capital. We have told the remaining couples hat are here that if they go, we'll have to as well. Not that I want to for any other reason then friendship.

WTH are my big girl panties?? :)

sweet and lovely crafts said...

I hear you! My bestest friend (whom I met at Walmart- true story) moved away a year ago and it SUCKS. She had a little girl Claire, that is just one month older than my Claire. It was so nice to have someone who just GOT me. I miss her so much, but we are the worst at staying in touch. So, I hear you.

Rainyday said...

I hate that feeling, obviously. *hugs* to you! Having someone who gets you is awesome and often rare.

Kristy said...

It is so hard to make new, good friends as you get older. I can relate. All of my close friends are all over the country. I have one good friend here at work. I often think I don't know what I'd do if she left that workplace or moved!

Carrie said...

I haven't really had any close friendships since kids arrived on the scene. I miss being able to call a friend up and just DOING something. No worries about schedules, naps, eating. You make it work.

Kids make it so difficult :p

I keep hoping to meet a new friend I can really click with. So far, no luck

Rainyday said...

Thanks Kristy & Carrie... I tell my boys to just introduce themselves, say hello, invite the child to play or whatever. That just doesn't work in adult relationships. It IS hard!

Jen Has A Pen said...

I need a sister wife too! Where are you located? We can buddy up! ;-) You sold me at "goat farming". I dream of goat farming. George says I need to get over the fantasy and that it ain't eva gonna happen. (Buzzkill, right?)

I hope things start looking up soon! If you need a cyber girlfriend, holla. I'm down. :-)

Rainyday said...

Thanks Jen! I'm up in Canada, so the commute/move to the goat farm might be killer, but I'll keep you posted!!! :) Though your in FL, right? Maybe I'll come down there, I've had enough of the rain up here.

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