By the time my best friend, Lisa, had her first baby I had a 3 year old and a 5 month old. I in no way am an expert on parenting but to her I was an encyclopedia of knowledge on newborns. Our first conversations took me back to how it felt bringing home a brand new baby and looking at his beautiful face and then having a panic attack because I must have left the “How-to” manual back at the hospital… But for real…
WHY DON’T BABIES COME WITH A GUIDE BOOK?!
As a new mom it can feel scary, lonely, and just plain overwhelming. My experience with Lisa becoming a mom has opened my eyes to just how important it is to find a mom tribe, or even just one mom mentor that you can lean on. I became Lisa’s “Phone-a-Mom” lifeline who is available for all the TMI questions, late night phone calls, and rash pics sent with an urgent “WHATS THIS?!” text message.
We have had a lot of long conversations about how nothing prepares you for motherhood. No one talks about the ugly side of raising a newborn or what happens to your body and frankly, your mind. There may have been talk once or twice about starting a podcast just spilling all the deets on the best perineal irrigation bottles, nipple guards, and talking people off of the ledge that is sleep deprivation. It may still happen, stay tuned.
The beauty of a Phone-a-Mom is knowing that you are not alone in all of the anxiety and grossness that is being a mom. You get someone who will pump you up when you are feeling mom-shamed by judgy people in Target giving you the side eye for your baby screaming at the top of her lungs, the fact you are still in sweatpants at 3pm and your hair that hasn’t been washed in a week. Your a dang queen who birthed a human!
A lot of women have the luxury of going to their own mothers for this precious role. My mother is a saint and the best role model out there, but there is definitely a perk to having a Phone-a-Mom friend that is just ahead of you in the motherhood game. Someone who has kids a year or two older than your own. She will have insight into what lays ahead for you in real-time. Learn from her mistakes and triumphs and grow an even stronger friendship along the way.
If you don’t have anyone around that you feel fits the bill, look to online Mom support groups or go join a Mommy & Me class! There are so many great resources out there for you to plug into a mom tribe.
I am so grateful and humbled that Lisa looks to me for advice. It means the world to me because I am still just an insecure mom doing her best, but I guess I must be doing something right.