When I went back to work after having L, I wrote this post about feeling disconnected and unsure of my new "position" as a parent. It's interesting to read that now and remember how it felt to be a new mom. After the encouraging comments I received, I started a sort of moms group that met once every few months for dinner and a chance to get out of the house. With the exhaustion and sickness of my pregnancy with Em, I sort of let it go. I have to admit that I was disappointed that no one seemed to notice when the dinners stopped. No one asked why or when we might meet again. Since the interest didn't seem to be there, I never started the dinners again after I had Em.
Now that I have two kids and a much better daycare situation, the guilt I feel for working is not as heavy. I view work as my break. I can eat, go to the bathroom, and have adult conversations whenever I want to. It's practically a cruise. My disconnected feeling, while still there sometimes, was helped greatly when I got an iPhone. That may sound silly, but having access to news, weather, social networking and almost everything else connects me to a world that can feel a little lonely, sometimes.
One of the goals on the list for my 2010 Plan is to reach out to people and make more of an effort to connect with others. Lately, I have been wondering what that means. I have, maybe, two friends who I spend time with and kids are always involved. I have no friends in the area that I can spend time with away from kids without a monumental effort to coordinate schedules and procure sitters. To be honest, the effort combined with my constant exhaustion level makes me lazy about planning anything. I know that my friends probably feel the same way. I don't remember my mother ever having many friends when we were little, other than her sister. M told me that his mom really didn't have anyone, outside of family, to go out with. It wasn't done back then and mothers didn't expect it. That leads me to the question of entitlement. Am I expecting too much? Is it selfish of me to want to go out and have time with friends outside of my role as a parent? Should I save any free time I have to spend with M? If I am able to get out of the house once every 6 months, should I just be grateful and shut up about it?
Sometimes I think that this drifting feeling I have is just a part of my motherhood experience. I know that there are other moms that have tons of mom friends and know many people with kids the same age as theirs, but that just isn't me. For whatever reason, the efforts I have made have felt forced or haven't panned out. Some say that things will get easier as the kids get older; they will join sports or other activities and we will have more opportunities to get to know other parents. That just isn't our reality right now and maybe the angst I am feeling is my inability to accept that. In the mean time, I am going to keep drifting, I guess.
Is that your reality as well? Do you have many friends with kids the same age as yours? How did you meet them? Do you still have friends from your "single" days?