I went on a date.
A mom date.
A date with other moms.
What is it about getting older that makes it so much harder to make friends?
My friendships changed drastically once I had kids. A little of that change was due to the fact that I was one of the first people in my social circle to have babies. A little of that change was because after our life changing experience at Sick Kids my entire way of thinking was forever altered. But mostly it was because my life was so drastically different and I just couldn’t keep up with my old life.
But making friends when you’re older isn’t easy. I imagine it’s similar to dating when you’re older. Most people are already hooked up with their crew, some people have been friends with the same people since they were in kindergarten, they don’t want some new girl coming in and disrupting the vibe.
Yet I know there are other mothers who are in the same spot I’m in. They grew apart from their pre-baby friends or maybe they moved to a new city and are far away from who they are closest to or maybe it’s because life is just so overwhelming that they can’t seem to find time to dedicate to friendships.
The thing is we still want to hang.
So I went on a date with 3 other mothers recently. We sat for hours over pizza and wine and chatted about anything and everything. We talked about our careers and how we struggle to balance motherhood with making a living. We talked about our lives and how they’ve changed and of course we talked about our kids.
We laughed and overshared and found out that even though we live different lives our struggle with our choices, our fears and our concerns are eerily similar.
It was beautiful.
I needed it.
I have never had a hard time making friends. But the older I get the choosier I am becoming when it comes to friendships.
The hours I have to myself are few and far between. It’s not always easy for me to find time to get out on my own so when I do go out I want to make sure that I’m spending my time with people to make me feel good.
My recent date with 3 other mothers did just that. I left feeling energized and inspired. I left feeling like I am not alone in some of my mom struggles or my career struggles. After just over three hours I left feeling like I found some people who get me.
Truth is, I am fast approaching 40 and here I am trying to find myself again. I’m stuck trying to figure out where this role of mother and wife fits into who I am. I am also looking for friends who are understanding of the kind of life I live.
I’m looking for friends who won’t judge me and the decisions I have made as a parent. I’m looking for friends who aren’t trying to be the perfect mother or perfect wife.
I want friends who can be real. Who can look me in the eye and tell me that sometimes they worry about just how deeply they are messing up their kids. I want friends who will be honest about their struggles. I want friends who will admit their marriage isn’t always sunshine and roses and who aren’t afraid to tell me that they yell at their kids or sometimes take a trip through the drive through for dinner.
So when I find myself lucky enough to be in the company of such women; women who are smart, funny, determined and ambitious and who are utterly and unapologetically real I breathe a sigh of relief and thank my lucky stars that we found each other.