There are people you connect with. And for different reasons. Usually you have something in common. Maybe you met in college. Or you see each other at the dog park. Or it’s the one person at work that doesn’t make you wish you’d quit your job. When you send the kids off to school you add to that social network.
And it’s interesting to see those relationships evolve. I look back as a mom of a k5er (no, it’s not a word, but it works) and see how things were. We had difficulty remembering each other’s names. We often just referred to people as, “that one kid’s Mom.” We were nervous parents, worried about if our kids would learn their ABC’s and share their toys. Most of our conversations were in passing in the hallways or parking lot. Fast forward five years. Same parents. Same kids. Different dynamics. We used to set up play dates with the kids. We’ve learned it’s just as important to set up dates without the kids.
A couple weeks ago I went to a Birthday party for one of the other Moms. Yeah. Just a little different. Instead of rushing to our cars like we do for the morning drop-off, we rushed to give each other those big oh-my-goodness-I can-hardly-breath kinda hugs. We tell our kids to not run around at restaurants. That night we had our own dance floor going! Our kids have been told that alcohol isn’t what it’ cracked up to be. After having my fill of adult beverages, I heard someone say it was time to do shots. Nope- not the kind for the flu.
When we first met our conversations were limited to where to the niceties like how our kids liked school and would we be going to the fall dance. Now we share deeper stuff. Like divorce. Job loss. Frustration with trying to be the best parent possible. It’s grown up stuff.
It’s ironic that we want our kids to make friends. But along the way we do too. But be open to invitations and keep your adult sippy cup handy. “That one kid’s Mom” could be your lifeline, dance partner, and friend all in one.