Oh my goodness. It's February 7 and this is my first post in 2011, and one of my new years goals was to blog twice a week. FAIL!
And that's how I've generally been feeling about life lately. It's mid-winter, I'm cold and I've had cabin fever for what feels like forever, my 7-month-old baby is a JOY but she's teething and waking up multiple times during the night and napping for a maximum of an hour each day. Oh, and even after three and a half years of living in this town, I have one friend* and no hobbies. Awesome!
The baby and I went to a La Leche League meeting today. I had three hopes in mind: to get some advice from other moms on solid foods (success) and sleep (failure, felt weird asking); to get the baby's mind off her teething troubles while she watched other children (success); and to maybe meet a friend (epic failure, as always). I smiled and tried to be nice, but from the first moment I could feel myself fading into the background, no more noticeable than a piece of furniture. No, I wasn't looking for a bosom buddy (HAHA! BOSOM BUDDY! At a BREASTFEEDING get-together! Come on, gals, I'm at least funny enough to befriend, right?), but I was hoping for at least a minute or two of one-on-one side conversation with somebody. Nope.
As the baby took her woefully short nap, I reflected on how my poor friend-making skills have manifested themselves throughout the years. When I was in kindergarten, we had gym class once a week, and we sat on the floor in an alphabetical-by-last-name row formation each week. I sat at the front of my row. The next row was headed up by a friendly-looking freckled redhead with a long ponytail. Every week, I would smile at her, and she smiled back. But that was the end of it. I never approached her in our regular class or during playtime or anything else. I was too shy. Twenty years later, I'm basically the same. The same! After twenty flipping years!
To compound problems, even though I had my baby over 7 months ago and she's happy and healthy, I can't help feeling like I'm not a "real" mom. When I go to mom gatherings like LLL or playgroups, I look around, and everybody else seems older**. Wiser. Mommer. Better. Infinitely more experienced, almost to the point that I want to address them as "Mrs." as I would someone of my own mom's generation. I don't know why this is. It doesn't happen with my friends whom I knew before they were mothers. It's like I've somehow made a delineation in my mind between people like me, who used to not be moms, and the moms I meet, who are moms and must have simply always been.
Mix the exhaustion, loneliness and utter lack of self-confidence with a generous dash of cabin fever and there you have it -- me. Anxiously awaiting sleep, socialization, self-assurance, and SPRING.
*Who hasn't moved away or wasn't a coworker -- great people, but I never see them.
**Are they older? Probably most of the ones with multiple children are. I'm right around the average age for a first-time mom, although I'm probably slightly below the average in this area as it's a college town. Regardless, it can't be that much of a difference and I shouldn't feel like I'm 13 compared to them.