Chapter six is easily one of my favorite chapters in this book. It is titled “I Miss my Friends”, but it’s not what you think. It’s about how friendships change when you have kids, and how you must manage your day differently when meeting up with your friends. I have a few mom friends, but Christina is the one I see the most. My other friends I see frequently don’t have children yet. When Gabriella was a couple of months old, it was easier to go out to dinner, to meet up with friends, or to run errands because she would sleep a lot. Now that she is 9 months old and started crawling and pulling up on EVERYTHING, running errands, going out to eat, or meeting at a friend’s house to visit isn’t as easy. She loves to be active, explore, and play with her toys! So, when we do go out, I try to plan my day around her naps. I at least try to get her morning nap in before leaving so I don’t have a cranky baby. The second nap is much easier to skip, because she will just go to bed a little earlier. I wouldn’t care if we left the house before her nap, but she DOES NOT nap anywhere but our house or in the car. She does not like to miss out on whatever action is going on, so her routine is always thrown off if we decide to leave. Some people may think it’s silly to plan my schedule around her naps, but I feel selfish if I drag her around with me and don’t let her get a good nap in. She is miserable and extra clingy. I have many paragraphs marked in this chapter to reflect back on, but here is one that I will share, “Getting together when kids are involved takes a lot of work, and even when you do manage to get together with another mom on a play date, the constant interruptions and noise from our children make it difficult to connect deeply. No wonder many moms, even those who have had good friends, feel like meaningful friendships are almost impossible during this season of life” (pg.60). So don’t worry momma, you are not alone!
As a mom, we often feel like we always must be “on top of our game”, and frequently compare ourselves to other moms and families. STOP! As Ruth says in Chapter 7, “We must stop comparing and competing if we want to experience the lives God has for us”. She goes on to reference Hebrews 12 and remind us that, “Finishing the race well, in God’s eyes, is more important than winning the race” (pg.75). Do you momma’s. Your baby needs you, and the best that YOU are capable of. While you are doing you, sometimes you may not feel appreciated. I’m sure every one of us has felt this at one time or another. Children are needy little humans, who sometimes forget to show their appreciation. However, it just takes a crooked little smile and those eyes looking at you with all that love to make things all better. Never forget that you are their world. They need you. “We love not for our own sakes, but for the benefit of our children. We are to selflessly and sacrificially love them for what God is doing and can do in them. This is the kind of love Jesus has towards us” (pg.82). Sometimes I do get frustrated or think ‘I need a break!’, but soon after feeling that way I will be soaking in the tub after my baby is asleep and regret every feeling that I needed a break. I cherish every moment spent with Gabriella, and I selfishly hate sharing her. I don’t want to miss out on any part of her life, as I get sad thinking about how quickly she is already growing. She will be 1 in October, but I feel like I just brought her home.
So I am working on finding a balance between having “me time”, as I know it is healthy, but also being here for her as much as I can. Join us back tomorrow for the next piece of our takeaway from this amazing book that I cannot recommend enough.