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Monday, August 30, 2010

Types of Mom Friends

I love all the parenting magazines I get and enjoy most of the articles. I do, however, fall behind in my reading of them. We keep all the magazines by the toilet (best place to do a little reading, obviously) and when I get a new one I just stick it in the magazine holder and grab one when I'm doing my thing. I just read the August 2009 issues of Parenting Early Years and stumbled across an article that got me thinking. It was all about the different types of friends that every mom needs to have and why. I got to thinking about the friends I have and where they fit on this list and also the kind of friend that I am to other people.


Friend #1: The Mom in the Same Boat: You need her b/c she "gets it." And you can keep her by trying to spend some one-on-one time without the kids and make it fun. Yes, you're busy with work, kids, errands, house, and other craziness but the more mom time away from play dates, the better. Make a date-you both deserve it and probably for the exact same reasons!

I feel like I have several friends that are in the same situation in life that I'm in (isn't that a blessing?)! Especially all my mom blog friends!!! Even though my mommy blog friends may not be friends I often see in "real life,", they are still legit friends. I love that we can share tips and experiences with each other, especially Rachael, Katie, and Kelly ~ I'm so thankful to have you girls in my life :)

As far as friends I actually get to see face-to-face, I am meeting more and more people in my situation in life. Of course Crissy and I have been friends a loooong time and now we are both mommies! And Robyn and I met through blogging but have become fast real-life friends. I'm so appreciative of both of these friendships as we can get together with our kids and have a great time. We understand if one of us is late or can't go out or has to cancel due to kid issues. We can feel free to discipline each other's kids without worry and can speak our opinions to each other freely. Both of these friends are strong Christian mothers AND awesome wives so both of them have similar goals to me. We want to get to Heaven and have happy, healthy marriages while being the best moms possible. I love that I'm getting closer and closer to both Crissy and Robyn and I feel like both of them have the potential to be life-long friends. In these relationships I feel like I'm giving as much as I'm taking because just like I enjoy being around some one in a similar stage of life to me, I know they enjoy it too!

We're still in similar stages of life even if she has 3x as many kids as I do :)
kids one month apart...if we get pregnant at the same time again then we'd really be in the same boat!

Friend #2: The No-Kids Pal: You need her for adult conversation and so you can act like you're still "cool." Single or non-mom friends are a testament for you that there is life outside of children and help you get a break from constant mom chatter. You can keep this friend by putting aside all the mommy stuff for an hour or two and taking time to find out what's new with her. Compromise is always key, even if your pal adores your kids.

My first thought when I think of my no-kids pal is Ashley. Since she's several years younger than I am I've always been in a different stage of life than she's been in. Lately though, our stages are different stages just aren't matching up. I'm busy being mommy and wife and she's just gotten into a very serious relationship that eats up all her time and energy. So we struggle to meet in the middle and find that compromise to make time for each other to foster our friendship. I do have other no-kids friends and I'm thankful for their friendships as well! Katie is my life-long-no-matter-what friend and I think we do a good job of keeping Kye out of our time together most of the time. Since Kye goes to bed so early it's easy to have "us" time be it watching Grey's or playing board games!

we've always just "clicked" when we're together
 fun nights are still possible, thanks to early bedtimes :)

My longest running baby free pal is Danielle. We've been good friends since high school and I don't know what I'd do without her! Even though she's not a mommy (yet) or even married (yet! a little over a month away!) she's still offered me some really, really amazing advice. Her strong faith has been SO inspiring for me and I love that the older we get, the closer we grow together. I know we'll always be friends and I hope she QUICKLY joins the mommy club (honeymoon baby, please!). I'm meeting some new baby-free friends and I'm hopeful that we can grow closer together as time goes on. I LOVE friends that don't have babies as it really does help me remember that my whole world isn't KYE and I think I do well not talking non-stop about my kid all the time. At least I think I do?

my longest running best friend!
Ashley T, one of my new baby-free (at least for now!) friends

Friend #3: The Been-There-Done-That Mom: You need her because she gets you through your "I don't know what I'm supposed to do next" moments. You can keep her easily because she probably loves giving advice as much as you love getting it. If you have asked for help, try to remember to call and tell her how well her ideas worked out. And even though you may not know yet what it's like to be in her shoes, you can still be a sounding board for her older-kid problems.

I don't really have this friend and I don't think I'm this friend for anyone else either. I'm trying to get to know the women at our church better because many of them have young children who are older than Kye but still young enough where their moms will remember when they were Kye's age! I think we're all naturally drawn to people like us and people with children near our kids age so they can play together. Lorelai is one month older than Kye and right now it still sometimes feels like Robyn has more knowledge than I do just because there are still some things that change within a month, but that will end soon. Also Crissy has Stevie who is about a year old than Kye but that even balances out at some point ya know? Really the most advice I probably get from a friend who I feel like has been-there-done-that is Kelly, my blog friend! I've only met her twice in person but she's my go-to with any Babywise related questions. I also feel like I'm that friend for her because there are some things I've dealt with that she hasn't with Babywise, and other things she has that I haven't. I for real want to make a friend like this though and hope to be one too!!! Anyone with a young baby want to adopt me as your been-there-done-that friend? I'm down!

a little more of a mommy-expert than I am (by a month!)
she's an all-in-one friend: one kid older, one kid about the same age, and now one younger!
my Babywise Buddy!

Friend #4: The I'll-Do-Anything-For-You Buddy: You need her because she'll help you with your garage sale, drive your kids to soccer, and bring over lasagna when you're dealing with a crisis. Friendships don't come with vows like marriages do so it's important to remind your friends that you care. Return the favor whenever you can to help keep this friend.

Hands down this friend for me is Katie. I cannot think of any other person who has ever done as much for me as she has. She's helped us move. She's helped us have garage sales. She drove up from Tallahassee for my last-min graduation ceremony. She suffered heat for all Zach's football games (and an interesting trips for a couple of them too). She was my right-hand-woman with all things wedding. She went above and beyond comforting me when Nana died. She cried (happy tears!) when we told her we were pregnant. She was at the hospital when Kye was born. We've gone through LOTS of friends but she's the one constant one. She's a saint in my book and I strive to be half as giving and loving and thoughtful as she is! If only the world could have more Katies in it..it'd be a better place for sure :) The great thing about our friendship is we KNOW we're both (and Zach too) always there for each other so we're not afraid to ask anything of the other one and not ever afraid that the friendship will fade!

making posters for all the games? def. a legit friend!

Friend #5: The Slightly Glam Girlfriend: You need her for inspiration (is is possible to be a fashionable mom), advice (how does she get out the door looking so great?), and a wardrobe you can borrow. You admire her got-it-togetherness, so tell her.  She surely works hard for it and will appreciate the compliment. Watch out for your own jealousy or embarrassment though. Most of us feel that way sometimes but if she's a real friend she's not trying to make you feel bad . She likes you for you - though if you're still wearing mom jeans, maybe she can help you trade up!

No offense to any of my friends...but I don't really have someone like this. I know Autumn (who takes many of Kye's professional pictures) inspired me as a mom when I saw her house and how you couldn't even tell she HAD a kid. All her toys were neatly put away and hidden out of clear site (I try to keep my house this way too, so thanks Autumn!). And another mom who I don't even know well personally inspired me b/c she's in her late 30's, has 3 kids and is HOT. Like amazingly hot. I don't even see her anymore but I always think of her and how I want to look like THAT someday. But I don't really look at someone and think they have it more together than I do. Many of my friends do have it together, don't get me wrong, I just think I have it together just as well as they do. I mean I made a goal for myself to not let myself go no matter HOW many kids I have and I think I've done well sticking to that goal :)

Friend #6: The Brutally Honest Pal: We all need to hear the truth, sometimes. But if your friend cares enough to tell you not just what you want to hear, then she's a keeper. For many women, sisters play this role; for others it's a lifetime friend, or a particularly outspoken newer one. The trick is distinguishing between someone who's just bossy and someone who actually puts thought about you into her opinions. If may take a day or two for you to digest what she's told you, but once you have done so, call your friend and thank her for being honest.

I know, without a doubt, that I AM this person. I realized at a young age that my facial expressions give away what I'm thinking. I'm a terrible liar so why try? Now that I'm a Christian I've learned to verbalize things nicer, and I've learned when to keep my mouth shut. But typically I say what I think and I will always be honest about my opinions (WHEN asked for them!). I think of all my friends, Rachael is the most like me. Sure, she's a blog-friend but I feel like we bond over our raw honesty. We sugar coat a little, but not much, and I love that she'll say her thoughts (I asked months ago if Kye's hair needed to be cut and she's didn't hesitate to say "YES"!). I'm not saying my other friends aren't honest with me, because I think they all are, I just know Rachael is pretty filter-free like I am and I LOVE that about her!

we NEED a more current picture please lady ;)

This article inspired me to work on being the I'll-Do-Anything-For-You Buddy friend in ALL my relationships in life. Serving others is so important and I don't think I do it enough! What friends do you have that fit these categories? I hope that I am one of these friends for you and if not let's get to know each other better!

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