Anti-Mommy Strikes Again

So yesterday we had some people over for dinner. This, it turns out, is the best way for me to socialize these days. People come to me, and in exchange I feed them.

This time, it was Mr. O’s friend from high school who recently moved back to town, along with said friend’s wife and toddler. If I am being honest, I was looking forward to it in part because I really like said friend’s wife. She has a similar sense of humor, reads the same kinds of books I do… and now we have that whole “I had a baby” thing in common. What I’ve really liked about her is that she has, in the past, expressed frustration with parenting. Not in the typical “Being a mom is so hard, but it’s great!” way. In the real “Sometimes my baby is a jerk” way. This isn’t schadenfreude– I appreciate the honesty. It’s a form of parenting I can get on board with.

I harbored fantasies that we would go out to lunch, join book clubs, and maybe even occasionally admit that we like our children.

Perhaps you’ve figured this out already, but this didn’t go exactly according to plan.

I’ll spare you a minute by minute recap. In general, the evening went well. Ish. Well-ish. I made a lasagna which came out nicely, and a berry almond cake. Tasty as hell, if I do say so myself. Our apartment was fairly clean– or at least as clean as having a newborn will allow.

We had a few funny exchanges about how I rarely leave the couch, and binge watching ALL THE THINGS is now completely acceptable. Their daughter is about a year old, and recently discovered walking. She tore through the apartment, picking up anything that wasn’t nailed down, spitting out peas on the floor– you know, acting like a toddler. I wasn’t bothered, but I could tell that my future-best-friend was a bit embarrassed. I kept telling her it was okay, because well, it WAS okay.

Anyway, there were a few times over the evening that clued me in to the fact that my future bestie may not be so bestie after all. For example, FBFF had exactly zero desire to return to work after her daughter was born. I can’t imagine feeling that way. I know it is still early, but I not only miss the adult contact, I also genuinely enjoy my work. When I mentioned this, she wasn’t so much judgey as she clearly couldn’t relate. That’s fine and all, I just wish I could find someone else who feels the same way. Strike one.

Later, she admitted that she has basically stopped paying attention to anything, like the news and current events type stuff, once her daughter was born. She is okay with this. I too have lost track of what’s going on in the world, but this makes me really sad. Like the GOP debates– I was soooo looking forward to watching the trainwreck known as Donald Trump, but I missed it. As in I completely forgot it was happening. I used to watch the Sunday morning news shows, and that crap… I don’t anymore, and I honestly miss it. Strike two.

But the final sign that our bestie status was not meant to be was when I put Chick down in his crib. He had been passed out through most of dinner in a Rock n’ Play, and I decided to put him in his crib. I scooped him up, put him down, and came back to the table.

FBFF: Wait… Did you just put him in his crib? And walk away?

Me: Um, yes. Is that a problem?

FBFF: No, I just could never do that with my kid. I couldn’t let her out of my sight.

To be clear, I don’t think she was trying to call me out or anything. I think she was genuinely surprised that someone could leave their kid’s side. But I did have this split second when I questioned if leaving a child asleep and unattended in his crib on his back with no blankets or stuffed animals around was in fact a reason to call child services.

I love Chick. I love love love him. But I do not need my hands on him at all times. Sometimes, I even let him cry– like if I’m on the toilet. I know he isn’t dying, and I need to finish peeing. Besides, he is okay on his own. FBFF and her tot want and need to be closer (physically.) That’s fine, but clearly not the direction Chick and I are headed in.

Striiiike three, and you’re outta here!

Other things: I made dinner and dessert. I sleep okay. I’m trying to resume normal activities– I’m REALLY hoping my doctor clears me for running at my 6 week check up tomorrow. All these things seemed like the exact opposite of her experience. She has become consumed by her kid.

It isn’t like I think she was being sanctimonious or anything. It was just a bit of a let down because I had so hoped I could find someone I could be frank about stuff with. I still like her tremendously, but there will be no matching tattoos in our future.



  1. lucy50 · August 12, 2015

    You’re not missing anything re: Trump.
    He’s made some misogynist comments about women who pump and he’s still talking about Rosie O’Donnell. The rest of the news is depressing because people are awful to each other.
    Walt Palmer-still in hiding.
    Cecil the lion-still dead as is one of his cubs. Half of the world grieving, half moving on.

    • thecommonostrich · August 13, 2015

      Ha! Thanks for the summary. I feel so out of touch, but it doesn’t seem like much has changed, eh?

  2. My Perfect Breakdown · August 12, 2015

    It sure sounds like you and FBFF are not meant to be! I love that you went in with such a positive hope that you were going to be great friends and so I’m a bit sad that you realized you wont be.
    Also, I really appreciate your thoughts on separation from Chick every now and again. Honestly, I expect to be the same way and so I think finishing peeing if your child is fussy (but not in danger) is a good thing for you and baby. 🙂

    • thecommonostrich · August 13, 2015

      Contrary to what this blog may indicate, I am occasionally optimistic!

    • thecommonostrich · August 13, 2015

      (Bah! I hit reply too soon!)

      If there is a silver from his time in the NICU, it is that I’m not afraid of separation. I know he is okay without me- and I’m okay without him. It could have gone either way, I guess.

  3. Molly · August 13, 2015

    It’s apparently really hard to meet moms who are on the same wavelength. There should be a for mom friends!

    • Jenny F. Scientist, PhD · August 13, 2015

      So many kinds of yes. Mine would start ‘if you don’t vaccinate your child on the CDC’s recommended schedule and you don’t have a medical reason like childhood leukemia, BZZZT.’

    • thecommonostrich · August 13, 2015

      You have something there. Why the hell isn’t there an app for that!

  4. C · August 13, 2015

    I’d like an app like that for finding friends once you’re a “grown up” …it’s just hard. Like a dating app…only for friends. Definitely on to something there!

    Jimmy Carter has cancer.
    Trump continues to frighten (at least me)

    See you haven’t missed much.

    • thecommonostrich · August 15, 2015

      I would download it for sure. Being at home with Chick is weirdly isolating, and I would love to meet other folks who are going through the same thing. Hopefully someone will get this app idea up and running!

  5. thebarrenlibrarian · August 13, 2015

    I’ve become pretty consumed by my kid, and I love her and our new life, but I also find myself starting to wake up a little. So I’ve tried getting out of the house more and *gasp* reading a fiction book!

    • thecommonostrich · August 15, 2015

      Which is fine! It’s totally endearing. I think this is more about my underlying frustration with expectations around motherhood. I love my kid, but I love a whole lot of other things. My challenge is going to be finding balance. Perhaps peeling myself off the couch is a place to start…

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s