Aubree and I met on the street. THE STREET. Literally walking down the street. Our oldest boys were somewhere between 5 or 7 weeks old and we were doing the new mom thing when you have a newborn and no other mom friends and you stay home with someone who eats and sleeps all day: you take the baby for a walk. It takes you a terrifying amount of time to leave the house and maybe you bring 3 diapers with you even if you’re just walking around the block because “you never know” right?
We bumped into each other and talked about how neither one of us could figure out the infant insert in the original Ergo and how old our boys were. Right then we decided to be best friends. This is a joke, but only kind of. I remember how excited I was to tell my husband when he got home that I’d met another Mom and her son was exactly one week older than our son and how we bonded over our shared Ergo failure. I was so excited I’d met another Mom. And then we exchanged numbers and things started getting serious. We set up play dates and stroller walks. If this sounds like dating, it’s because it kinda is! It’s funny but true. It’s hard making mom friends because your parenting style becomes a whole new thing you have to check on friendship compatability. And it’s intimidating!
I’ve never made a friend on the street before meeting Aubree in case you think I’m one of those “no such thing as a stranger” person and doubt I ever will again. But this sums up making mom friends: you gotta put yourself out there. You gotta put on your coolest mom uniform and say “hi” to complete strangers. And if the interaction goes well and you want to “see each other again” you ask for their number.
It’s weird, but you do it. You join new mom groups. You go to meet up groups. Both my friends Katherine and Jen went to baby wearing groups. In hindsight this is now hilarious but THOSE EXIST! There’s breast feeding groups. There’s LGBT parenting groups. There’s groups for parents with kids who have special needs or need a little extra attention. AND oooooooohhhhh Mama there’s stroller fit groups. These were always way too scary for me, and my child would never sit in his stroller for an hour. There’s mama and baby yoga classes. There’s music classes. All these classes run on weekends so working parents can go to.
And the best thing about making one mom friend is that chances are they know other moms who you’ll like too! I met my incredible friend Diana at a New Mama group and through her I met Maggie who makes me laugh on a daily basis and suggested the preschool that all our little kids now go to! Life’s weird like that. But when you meet your people you can’t imagine your life without them. And you’re so thankful you put yourself out there.
Trust me, as an introvert I know, it’s terrifying to talk to strangers. It’s like the first thing we were taught as kids. Don’t talk to strangers. Don’t tell them where you live or your phone number or anything. And now here we are as new parents forcing ourselves to talk to strangers to get their phone numbers and invite them over to our homes. But you CAN do it! And you’ll be happy you did.
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