Once you have children, you often make friends via them. I have made some fantastic friends over the past 9 years since India was born, stretching as far back as when I attended a First Time Mums’ group. None of us could see straight thanks to sleep deprivation, but we bonded over the shared loss of our waistlines.
Over the years I have since made friends with other parents from my girls’ nurseries and schools, and along the way life as a mummy has kept evolving and updating. No sooner have I adjusted to one stage of my daughters’ childhoods, than we are onto the next, and the transition has always been made easier through my buddies who are going through the same thing.
When I first became a mother, I was in awe of all my friends who had done it before me, to the extent of wondering how they were actually still functioning human beings.
It seems not so long ago that we were all steaming vegetables, pureeing them, and freezing the resulting mush in ice cube trays. Nearly a decade on I feel obliged to confess that this sounds like the ravings of a lunatic, but I once spent hours of my life sweating over sweet potatoes, which the media had convinced me I had to shovel into my child, or else they’d be knock-kneed with rickets by the time they first did a poo on a potty.
At the time all of this seemed completely normal, but then so did effectively milking myself over a sink when I returned from hospital, and the night my c-section wound burst open only for me to be told to hold a sanitary towel across it. Nowadays my reaction to the latter would be closer to “999!!” but back then I simply did as the midwives told me.
Over the years we often move on from the friends we made through having babies, though I am still in contact with those that I was always closest to. As our children age, they follow different paths, and we have to move with them. We return to work, we may move house, relationships change, and life, as ever, keeps marching on.
However, I remember each and every one of the mummy mates that I have had over the past 9 years, and I’d like to say a thank you to you all. It’s a mad ride, and without my friends, I couldn’t do it.
First published in The Portsmouth News, Tuesday 21st July 2015