In my young adulthood, I have lived in various places in the South — Charleston, SC to Tallahassee, FL and now Jacksonville. So, I have acquired a lot of friends around my age (late 20s) whom I have grown to love and appreciate. As my friends and I became older, we started hitting milestones. Embarking on careers, traveling, engagements, marriages. But there is one rite of passage that has not been achieved yet with many of my friends that I have achieved, and that is parenthood. Yes, I am that friend who is already married with a kid. And, yes, SOMETIMES I am envious of my friends’ lives.
The excitement of having a child is indescribable, but the struggle of lugging all their supplies with you everywhere you go can be described easily: It sucks. A lot. Whenever I go out to lunch or shopping with my friends with my son in tow, I can be seen unfolding a stroller bigger than I am, putting a huge diaper bag in the bottom compartment and finally attempting to seat and buckle my wiggly child in the stroller. Meanwhile, my friends usually hop out of their car with just a phone and their car keys! Oh, and sunglasses perched coolly on their heads, while my sunglasses are either at the bottom of the diaper bag or in my kid’s mouth.
After all this maneuvering, my outings are usually cut short due to my son’s exhaustion, a meltdown and/or mischievous behavior.
And forget checking in on Facebook or posting a picture on Instagram — not even an option since my 2-year-old usually takes hostage of my phone.
Conversations also are quite different with my friends. I am often complaining about sleep deprivation and potty-training failures, along with any cute things my kid says or does to show that he isn’t just a mini tyrant. My friends, on the other hand, are usually talking about how they aren’t ready for kids and the international trips they plan on taking this year, including a friend who decided on a 48-hour spur-of-the-moment trip to Puerto Rico. Yes, a spur-of-the-moment international trip. I would need at least 48 days to even fathom taking a trip, let alone deciding to take one in a matter of two days!
I have a dear childhood friend who lives in Orlando and literally goes to Disney World every single day. Yes, every single day. Being a mother, just going to the playground takes a self-pep talk. And my dear friend always asks why I don’t bring my kid to Disney more often. He does not get that one doesn’t just simply bring your 2-year-old to Disney. It takes planning, therapy, bribery, snacks, a change of clothes, Red Bull… I could go on.
For my childless friends, Saturdays are for running errands, manicures, and grocery shopping. For me, Saturdays are for catching up on laundry, dishes, and cleaning, as well as regaining my sanity. All the while, my son interrupts me with requests for a snack, to put on weird Play-Doh videos on YouTube, or to be carried around like the little king that he is. The days of hanging out with my friends for more than an hour on the weekends are long gone. It’s just a distant dream. Not only do I have to make plans strategically before or after nap time, but I have to be prepared with an arsenal of snacks and entertainment.
Honestly, before I had my son, I don’t think I realized how life-changing motherhood would be. However, I wouldn’t change it for the world.
Of course, as my friends and I get older, we are all going to be in different seasons of our lives at different times in our lives. If it’s a true and worthy friendship, it will stand the test of weather and time. My having a child does not stop my friends from spending time with me. In fact, they have no problem changing plans to fit my needs as a mom. Being a new mom doesn’t necessarily mean only having friends from a mom group. Kids or not, as long, as my friends and I share the commonalities and positivity of friendship, then that is all that matters.
Mecia Adriano is a 20-something wife and mother of one who was raised in Charleston, SC. She is a Florida A&M graduate, with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing. The desire for change and to be closer to her parents led her to Jacksonville, FL. Mecia has been a registered nurse for seven years and currently works full-time with a local hospice organization. She enjoys bargain hunting, attending food truck rallies, fashion, rare date nights, blogging, and of course, raising her little man. Mecia displays her comedic yet realistic, matter-of-fact views on parenting and life in general in her blog posts and on social media.