Monday, March 2, 2015
A very good friend of mine moved away last week - to Maine (yes, in February).
We thought they would have a couple more weeks in town, but it turned out that they had to leave sooner rather than later.
We will all miss them a lot - not only were our children friends, but our husbands were friends. We spent a lot of time the year before Clothilde and her youngest were born, doing fun things with the children.
We made lacto-fermented perogi dough, honey-sweetened marshmallows, felted crafts for Christmas. It was so fun, and I always felt like I could talk with her about anything. They helped us not feel quite so weird here - and that was partly why they moved away. Because the schools are not very good here, because the culture, if you are not part of it, is hard to live with. A lot of the culture and social groups here revolve around churches. It's hard to find other families who breastfeed, care about what they feed themselves or their children, don't scream at/hit their children in public, ect, ect.
When I first became a mother, I felt this amazing connection with so many different women. I felt like I could connect with any other woman who had experienced motherhood, just through the love we shared of our babies and children.
Before Rose was born, I was part of a local mom's group. It was supposed to be an Attachment Parenting group. I was so pleased to connect with other mothers who believed in breastfeeding, cloth diapering, natural birth, co-sleeping, gentle parenting, non-toxic living, organic food, etc. It was so disappointing to find that not only did most of the people NOT believe in those things, they also were very defensive about screaming at their kids, disposable diapers, and eating at McDonald's. I eventually quit the group (after there were vengeful DCF calls after disagreements between the members) and decided I'd rather be isolated than embroiled in that kind of a social dumpster fire.
I thought I would be unhappy being alone, doing my own thing. I was afraid my kids would be lonely, and it would be all my fault. Because their mom couldn't fit in anywhere, couldn't keep her mouth shut, couldn't just be normal. But I realized that being a part of that group was making me hate my children. At one point, after I screamed at them in the car, I realized I sounded just like my mom (and some of the women in the group) - bitchy and mean and uncaring.
That was when I realized how important it is to feed not only your body with good things, but also your soul and your consciousness. I realized how far away I had gotten from what kind of a mother I always wanted to be.
Instead of being unhappy, I felt totally free after quitting that group. I felt like I could be whoever I wanted - I could follow my heart and soul-path to live close to the earth, close to my family and loved ones, and feel good about it.
Over the years, I have slowly healed from that experience, reached out a little to other mothers who, regardless of their parenting or life-style choices, are truly nice or interesting people. But it has been very hesitant, because I am still afraid.
For years now I have relied on my friend for so much...and now she will be far, far away (I have tears in my eyes as I write this). A little nudge from the universe, perhaps, to break out of my shell a little more.