Thursday, March 1, 2012
When fertility affects friendships
It's been two years since that special day. It's beyond difficult to believe. How can time pass that quickly?
I'm left reflecting on a great many things as the little's birthday approaches, but without question one of the biggest changes in my life over the past two years has been a very distinct shift in my social circle.
Sure, men can pee standing up. But we? We can make people.
It's just that some of us go a different route than others. Some of us make those people early in our lives and others wait or don't make people at all. All of it is perfectly okay.
Still... it creates a gap. The haves and the have-nots. Two completely different worlds that, within a friendship, must exist simultaneously.
It's a gap I often haven't been fortunate enough to bridge.
I can't regret the decision entirely, because in the absence of my other life friends I have found new and extremely rewarding relationships with many amazing women forged through the bond only motherhood can create.
As I addressed those invitations, I had such unease about who to send them to. It was a funny feeling; there are a few people from my old life I'd like to come. To be totally honest, though, I'm not sure we're even still friends. I'm just not the same person I was two years ago. The hours we keep are completely different and the priorities have shifted so greatly that conversation seems awkward and forced. Not to mention, I don't know how many years in a row I can continue asking people to celebrate all the milestones in my life without any real way to reciprocate.
Come to your birthday and drink with you until 2 a.m.? I can't. My babysitter is sick and my kid gets up at 6.
At least with other mommies, we're all on square footing: you come to my kid's birthday party, I'll come to yours. Accepted socialization hours are 9 a.m. and 2 p.m. at places where no one is expected to sit still or behave themselves. Conversations about other people's bodily fluids are perfectly normal and encouraged.
Part of me thinks it's a sad state, the fact that these two worlds don't coexist naturally.
The other part of me, though, the one that delights in my little girl's development, can't wait to potty train and loves to hear the stories of all the mommies who have been there before me, thinks it may just be part of the journey. One of the many things we go through on this path; giving up pieces of who we used to be in order to become new and better creatures lucky enough to be named MOM.
For many reasons, I hope it won't be like this forever. Either my friends will have kids eventually and we'll be able to rekindle the bond that once existed, or my own children will get older and the time constraints will become less or different.
Either way, it's a casualty I didn't foresee two years ago.
Is it worth it? Always, always.