Thursday, June 16, 2011

Lessons Learned from Friends

No... not these Friends.... though I have to admit I love the footwear. Must pick some up before that pole-dancing class.....

A man's character may be learned from the adjectives which he habitually uses in converstaion.-Mark Twain

At 9:03 on the morning of Monday, January 17, 2011, Avery wasn't the only person being born: I was being reborn as a mother, though I didn't realize it at the time. Over the next few weeks, my old identity faded away as we went together through the process of learning how to survive in this world. It was tough: we had to take it one day, one hour, one minute, sometimes one second and one colicy scream at a time, but we made it. And now there's a precious little girl rolling around and trying to blow raspberries at my feet.

And once the dust settled, I looked in the mirror and didn't recognize the woman staring back at me. Tax deadlines and fudge recipes no longer held a candle to the new most important things in my life. Poop in the bed isn't a catastrophe - just another load of laundry. As far as Avery is concerned, I'm the best playmate, rocker, changer, bather, and lullaby singer around, and that's all I need.

Or is it?

They say it takes a village to raise a baby, but I believe it also takes a village to raise a mother.

So, without realizing it, I had to enlist the help of my friends to re-figure-out who I was. I started with my veteran friends who had been through this before: my girls who already have a few little ones of their own and still seem to be relatively normal. They reminded me that my life won't forever revolve around feeding times and naps.

From there I unconsciously branched out on a mission to reestablish my identity, and looking back on the past few months, I realize I've learned and gained so much from the girls around me. From not settling for anything than the best, to the fact that skiing is just like riding a bike, to rediscovering the joy of a recipe well-executed, they have unwittingly settled me into a much more well-rounded (pardon the pun) person. And in the process, I remembered who I was before this whirlwind named Avery came along.

Friends to remind us to slow down and stop to smell the roses. And to play dress-up.

Friends to squeal with and help us come up with silly nicknames.

I had to rely on friends who reminded me that I need to take care of myself. After all, if you feel pretty, you look pretty.

Friends who remind me to keep it real and oh-so-stylish with a great sense of humor.

Friends who let Mike and me go out and remember that yes, we are happily husband and wife, not just two sleep-deprived slaves to the littlest Peacock.

Friends who let me be myself and goof around. (Avery is pea-green with envy in this photo.)

..... and reminded me that you have to play in the sunshine once in a while, even if I was wearing a white shirt that was soaked by the fountain.

Friends who will pray with us.

Friends with whom I could share the triumph over a 10-pound bundle of screaming once she finally passed out for that nap.

Friends who reminded me to be true to my roots and to myself and how to laugh loudest of all.

Friends who I know will always be there and who can teach us how to play patty-cake.

Friends to celebrate and with whom we can share the highs and lows of life.

So thank you my dear friends. There are tons more girls whose photos aren't in this post, only because I didn't think to snap a quick photo of you when I had the chance - shame on me. We'll blame that on mommy-brain.

You know who you are, but you'll never know how much you mean to me.

Friends photo courtesy of BolumreBeri.


Anonymous said...

I want to hold her too!



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