Friends & Expectations

I’ve been struggling a lot recently with expectations.

I found out this week that a friend of mine was in DC for a conference, and she managed to have time to contact and meet up with another friend of mine (I introduced the two of them a few years back).  But neither of them bothered to email, phone or attempt to meet up with me.  Ouch.  Kick me while I’m down (because I haven’t exactly been feeling all bright and cheery lately).

I don’t blame either of them though (I am the first to admit that recently haven’t been the most fun person to be around).  Instead I reflected.  Am I a bad friend?  Over the past 5 months I haven’t called people back, I haven’t met up for lunches, I haven’t wanted to spend my free time meeting up with other moms and babies while we do nothing but chase around and chat about said babies.  But I don’t think that puts me in the bad friend category.  Why?  Because I’m still trying to figure out what I think of this new life, I’m befuddled because the expectation is that I should LOVE my new life.  I should be over the moon about it.  Sometimes I am, sometimes I’m not.

People can’t accept the last part of that statement; they don’t how to deal with those who maybe may not be all oooh-baby-gaga over their new life (not that I’ve ever been overly-happy-gushy-gaga about much of anything, it’s not really my style).  Regardless of my reaction to motherhood, I would hope that women- mothers- friends could be more understanding, because when someone may not respond to you immediately…that probably means they need you as a friend more than ever.  They don’t need to be ignored.

But that is how I have felt recently.  Ignored and left-out.  Not just by these two friends but by some others that are even closer.  It makes for a rough go of it and complicates the funk I’m trying so desperately to get myself out of.  When it comes down to it I guess somethings never change; we all struggle with wanting to be included.  Right now I feel about as excluded as one can feel while struggling with my new role as ‘mom’.  In a perfect world my friends would surround and help.  Instead they forge on without.

Back to the expectations…Syd is amazing; I couldn’t have made a better child.  But that doesn’t mean my entire life revolves around her, nor do I expect it to. I am multifaceted; boss, wife, mother.  I’ve had many years to figure out ‘wife’, and I’ve been ‘boss’ for a while too.  I’ve only been at this ‘mother’ thing for 5 months.  It takes some getting used to.  And there is nothing wrong with that.  I just wish the expectations from other mothers and friends were the same.  I do find myself growing closer to friends who hold the same facets, but it still hurts to see others fade away.

Comments

  1. I wish I had something inspirational or insightful to say to make you feel better but I don’t. I’m sorry you’re having such a hard time right now and I’m sorry your friends were being shitty. I have been in that situation before and I can empathize. It sucks feeling left out and like people are leaving you behind.

    I also understand where you’re coming from about not always loving life-as-mommy. It’s really hard. That seems to be the number-one thing that no one tells you when you have a baby–it’s really hard and you don’t always feel the oh-my-I-love-my-life feeling. I thought it was especially hard the first 6-8 months or so. Your life doesn’t belong to you, your time doesn’t belong to you, your body doesn’t belong to you. I’ve now come to terms with the fact that my life and my time aren’t mine alone anymore and won’t be for years, decades even. I do finally have my body back though, which for me helped a lot. (For me, it felt so liberating and I was so relieved to give up breastfeeding and get my body back to myself. I know that some moms I know would look down on me and judge me for stopping, particularly if they knew just how liberated, relieved, and not sorry I felt about it. It was the right decision for me).

    Anyway, I hope you are able to find what you need. I think we all just muddle through this “mother” thing. Luckily, our kids will never know that we’re muddling through and that we have bad days, etc. At least I never knew when my mom did. Oh, and Albert says that if you need inspiration, watch “The Blind Side.” (he’s a sucker for inspirational sports movies).

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