I am an “older” mom. Many people try to argue that with me but when I tell them I was actually labeled Advanced Maternal Age that usually puts a stop to the conversation fairly quickly (and somewhat awkwardly, I suppose). The fact that the majority of my friends have been making babies for a while now and some have stopped for a while now is actually pretty handy and I have come to appreciate these friends on a whole new level. I’ve also come to appreciate my friends in other stages of motherhood, as well.
I’ve realized that there are 3 kind of friends I really need in my life. I think every mom does! Here are the 3 friends every mom should have (according to me):
1. Right There With You.
Ok, so maybe “friend” is a loose term for this one. This friend may not give you more than a “I’m right there with you, sister” nod at a one year old's birthday party (as you shove a cupcake down your throat while chasing your independent toddler) or a reply text three weeks later (that’s ok because yours was a reply to her text sent 4 weeks earlier) but you need her. You need to see that someone knows exactly how you feel.
As I mentioned, the majority of my friends are not in the same stage as I am, so when I am around women who are where I am right now. I eat it up (like that cupcake you swallowed whole). There is something incredibly comforting about a friend who gets where you’re at, not because she’s been there but because she is there. We need this friend.
She makes us feel a whole lot less alone.
2. A Little Ahead of You.
This is the friend who gives you hand-me-downs, doctor referrals, a heads up on the teacher’s to request, the lowdown on college applications & scholarships, etc. She’s not quite where you are but she was just there and she is oh so helpful. She’s not so far removed from your season that she really can’t remember but she’s also not in the thick of it, so she can really give you some great perspective and insight. She empathizes with the challenges you are facing and she remembers vividly the triumphs.
This friend might be one of your biggest resources and cheerleaders.
3. Been There Done That (and Totally Missing It).
I have a particular friend that comes to mind on this one and I wish I could hug her right now. Twice. This is the friend that reminds you to enjoy your current season. She tells you to soak it all in, live in every moment, because it will soon be gone. When you’re feeling overwhelmed, she can’t help but point out all of the wonderful things about where you’re at as a mom - a place she wishes with all of her heart that she could go back to, even if just for a brief visit. She not only celebrates with you but she simply celebrates you because she has a deep appreciation for motherhood.
This friend is your encourager. In many ways she will keep you going but, more than that, she will keep you grateful.
What type of friends have you found valuable as a mom?