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This Is So Junior High, But Will You Be My Mom Friend?

Photograph by Twenty20

Dear Mama,

Hey, girl. I know you’re tired and you’ve got 100 things swirling in your brain right now, so I won’t take up too much of your time. I’ve really been wanting to get this off of my chest, and I feel so incredibly junior high about it. But whatever. It has to be said:

Can we be friends?

Yes, I realize this sounds cheesy and lame but I just ... well, I need you. And I know you need me.

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Girlfriend, listen. I get why you’re swamped and feeling all out of sorts. Somewhere, you thought you were supposed to do it all. Who lied to you? What sanctimommy, book or TV show told you that you couldn’t depend on someone else? Can I tell you something else? I need you. I need your love. I need your support. I need you to let me complain without judging me, and I need you know when to get me help. I don’t feel any less stronger admitting this. I can confidently mother with flaws, but I can’t mother without you.

I know you feel like you’re going through this all alone. It seems that way, doesn’t it?

When I’m up at 3 a.m., I think of how cool it would be if you were down the street, also awake, with your restless babe. We’d take turns watching each other's children while the other slept. Our spouses would be friends, and we’d have each other's backs in every way.

I know you feel like you’re going through this all alone. It seems that way, doesn’t it? When you read comments of how other mothers' kids slept 12 hours straight and your kid doesn’t, you feel defeated. Surely you’re the only mama having latching issues. Your kid is always the only one having a meltdown in Target, right?

Girl, no.

I don’t know if I’m coming or going and, really, I just need someone who understands.

It isn’t just you. This is why I want to be in your village. I want us to have each other and to know that we aren’t alone in this child raising thing.

I need you to remind me of who I was before I became a mother. I want to do the same for you. I want to encourage you to take up sewing again. I’ll watch your babies while you enjoy some alone time at the coffee shop. Dissing your post-baby body? You better not because, if you do, I’ll be right there reminding you what amazing things that body has done.

Sometimes I want to cry and don’t know why. I’m so tired and so overwhelmed. I don’t know if I’m coming or going and, really, I just need someone who understands. I need a friend who understands the demands of the nursing baby or the stresses I get with helping parent my spirited older child. I don’t want to do this without you.

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But wait, don’t you for one second think I’ll get in the way. I don’t want you thinking that I’ll be problem. I’m not looking for hour-long conversations and high-maintenance relationship perks. Regular vents through Facebook Messenger and chats work for me. The occasional Girls’ Night Out and annual vacations would be fabulous. I think we could benefit having each other around, and I’d love the chance.

So ... friends?

XOXO,

Me

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