The Mom’s Club: Outside looking in

Mom's Club Logo

Every Friday morning at 10am they meet together.  As the front door opens, the children giggle as they eagerly run inside to the play room, the moms put down their purses, take off their shoes, and then huddle around a pot of coffee and pastries.  As I stand outside, just looking in, I can’t hear their words, but I can see them talking as they laugh with one another.

I imagine they are exchanging stories of when Sally started walking or how old John was when he said his first word.  I can bet they are also giving tips on getting their toddler to eat or exchanging advice on the best methods of discipline.  One mother might be getting ideas for their child’s first birthday party, while another is discussing her plans for having baby #2.

I could go in, most of them are my friends, but what would I contribute to the conversation?  Our lives are so much different and despite being of similar age, with similar education levels and interests, I am now “set apart”.  Infertility sets me apart.   It didn’t used to be like this.  In fact, at first, it was Sarah who was “set apart”.  She was the first to have a child and was unable to go to dinner because of the difficulty in finding a babysitter or there was not enough money due to the extra expense of diapers and formula.  But the tide has shifted and Sarah is no longer alone as more of the group friends now have babies.  It’s no longer Friday night group dates but Friday morning play dates.

It’s one of the hardest things to deal with when your friends all start moving on to the next stage of life, having children, and although you are trying, it simply isn’t happening.  You start to feel excluded.  Sure they are still your friends, but as their conversations shift from which new restaurants to try, to which breast pump works the best, you realize you are being left behind…whether it’s intentional or unintentional, it’s happening.

What do I do?  Should I ‘borrow’ a child and join them on Friday’s? Maybe I should find new friends who don’t debate cloth diapers versus disposable or jar baby food versus fresh?  While I am not into feeling ‘phony’ by borrowing another child, I am also not into finding new friends. Infertility has robbed me of so much already that I don’t want it to rob me of my friends as well.

So as I stand outside on this Friday morning looking in the window as if a child staring into a candy store , I could will put on my ‘big girl panties’, go in and enjoy myself. I won’t think thoughts of being left behind or throw myself a pity party by feeling excluded because for now, until I receive my official “Mom’s Club” card,  I will embrace my “non-member” card.   I understand that I don’t have much to add to their conversations, but it gives me time to listen.  I can listen to them talk about the best breast pumps, diapers, and formula.  Or what a waste of money half of the items that were purchased after little Timmy was born turned out to be.   I can take notes on how to shove food get my future toddler to eat more fruits and vegetables and I can ask for their REAL advice on what to expect when expecting.

These “official members” are loaded with resources and now is the time for me to gather advice while kicking up my feet, sipping on my hot coffee, enjoying my pastry, and not having to worry about whether my child is fighting sharing toys with Sarah’s child.  God is faithful and I can sit with this group of women knowing that my time to trade in my low-rise jeans for Mom jeans is coming SOON!  I have faith that SOON, my “non-member” card will expire and God will be sending me a new card…a card that reads “Welcome to the Mom’s Club.” 

Don’t stand on the outside looking in, despising this time as a “non-member”, but rather embrace it and learn all you can now,  because one day you will be an “official member”.  You will be the one passing down helpful advice while drinking cold coffee, sharing a pastry with your toddler, and chasing little Billy Bob, who is holding a sharpie marker, down the hallway.

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45 thoughts on “The Mom’s Club: Outside looking in

  1. I truly can’t describe how comforting your writing is for me. Very beautiful. Your friends are all paving the way for you to have am experienced entourage who will support you when your time will come. ((Hugs))

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  2. I love your positivity! It’s contagious, you know. March in and get all the advice, tips, hand me downs, toys, etc. And then you know what to do….yes, share ’em with me!

    From another non-member friend!

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  3. What a great attitude to have. 🙂 I like hanging out with my friends and their children. But I don’t approach mothers who gather at church when they talk about their kids. It’s funny how I feel sometimes. For some, I can’t wait to hug and hold their newborns and can’t wait to play with their children. For others, I want to avoid them like a plague. One thing I know is that I can always go to my friends for advice in the future. And I do recognize that it’s a blessing. 🙂

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  4. And one day, YOU, too will be a member, my sweet friend! I just know it. I just know that one day I will open my email and see your sweet post, and I can only imagine the creative way you will come up with to tell all of us that your miracle has happened! I am believing God and praying often for you! Every day God is preparing you more and more for the moment your little one lands in your arms. Every opportunity with the other Moms provides the valuable insight and wisdom learned through others’ experiences you will so need in those middle-of-the-night moments when you don’t want to call or bother anyone. You will then draw from these overflowing, valuable wells to sustain you and guide you. I love your positive outlook. Truly you inspire and bless so many! Love you!

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  5. You are brave for going in and I can really see how hars it must be to be left out. My friends almost all have kids but I see them individually as they are not friends with each other. It’s hard but maybe a bit easier than seeing them all together. In any case I came to the same conclusion as you: I’d rather see them than not.
    Beautiful post as usual. Thanks!

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    • Thanks girl! It really isn’t that bad with them all together. Sometimes I actually walk away saying, “Whew! Glad I am leaving alone today!” LOL!

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  6. This is great!! I was so jealous when my SIL “accidentally” got pregnant while we had been trying for quite a while BUT it turned out to be such a blessing. I have learned so much about babies first hand from my nephew 🙂 Sounds like you will have the same thing after being a part of these groups. You are in my prayers Elisha. HUGS!

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  7. Such a mature attitude. I go back and forth on this. Sometimes I can handle it, sometimes I can’t. I remember feeling that way with my college girlfriends when they all started having babies. My friend groups have morphed over the years, and right now, I don’t really have close friends with babies… just older friends whose kids are grown and some marrieds but no kids. So, it’s a not really an issue most of the time. But this is a great thing to remember when I am around those moms. I do have some of those friends I get together with…so yes, I’ll be taking notes. You have such a great attitude!

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    • It hasn’t been until recently that I was able to sit there and not “feel sorry for myself.” One day I was upset that I felt left out (I was just hanging out after church chatting with them) but then as I walked to my car I heard the Holy Spirit speak to me…”why are you so upset?! Don’t you know that God is faithful and there is no need to feel downcast.” It was a life changing moment for me. HUGS girl!

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    • I agree with Kate! Sometimes I can handle it, sometimes I can’t! It can ebb and flow … but I love your attitude on this!! Embrace what we have today and join in what we can, even if it’s not 100% relate able. Great post!

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      • Thanks girl!! When I start to feel “ugh!” I just repeat Gods promises of healing and psalm 113:9 over and over. It strengthens my faith and gives me peace. The hard part is switching my thoughts to positive. :/

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  8. what a great post!! I know exactly how you feel. and i’m embarrassed to say, I tend to feel the empty void in my chest when I sit there listening to their “mom” stories and issues. its these times I know I need to have more faith. more faith that I will eventually turn in my “non-member” card. You are super brave and I totally admire your strength!! thank you for sharing!

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    • I seem to have peace while I sit there. The peace MUST be coming from God fo’sho! I just have a sense of confidence that He will settle the barren woman like Psalm 113:9 says. Focusing on who He is and His ability to make it happen for me, makes listening to their stories so much easier. hugs!

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  9. Elisha, you set such a good example. I always know that when I am feeling pity party-ish, I can read your words and they lift me up and remind me to keep the faith. Thank you for that!

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    • YES KEEP THAT FAITH and HOPE!! I love the verse Hebrews 10:23….Let us hold tightly without wavering to the hope we affirm, for God can be trusted to keep his promise.

      Keep holding on because the devil will try to steal it with doubt, fear, worry, and unbelief! HUGS!

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  10. So much truth in these words! I find that, like so many aspects if this journey, some weeks are harder than others to hang out with my friends and their babies. But I try really hard to maintain those friendships. It’s not their fault I can’t have babies. (-:

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  11. Girl I can relate to this! A few of my friends started having babies before I even married (or trying to have a baby). It was a really difficult time in our friendship because as much as I wanted to hear about what was going on with their little ones it was almost like they didn’t want to tell me anything bc they thought I wouldnt understand/didnt want to know. Any they certainly were not interested in the things I was doing with my single life. Since getting married and getting my half-way moms club card as a step parent, things have gotten slightly better with them….but then step parenting is totally foreign to them too. It never feels good to be set apart from your friends. You are amazing for being able to go to that group. And I know you are getting your official mom card soon. xoxo

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  12. Elisha you are a wonder! I am so happy to hear that you haven’t let friendships slip away. I love one on one time with friends with children, even time spent with a couple moms, but feel too left out when I’m way outnumbered, and get too uncomfortable when complaining kicks in (and it usually does) I really admire that you’re able to learn and prepare during this season. You are going to be the best Mama bird ever! Love you girl!

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  13. This is so admirable of you! I don’t think I could do it. I often get annoyed when the conversation stays too long on my friends’ kids. It is something I need to work through as I’m sure I am missing out on some possible friendships with women in my church. Thank you for sharing this. You are so strong!

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  14. Such a great post! We always need these reminders, I think, when we’re infertile. Almost all of my friends have children too now, and both my sisters, despite me and hubby marrying before all of them. It was so hard at first, but the more I found ways to enjoy it, the easier it got. I love all their kids, and it’s so much easier now. I just listen and absorb and remember. I’m almost a novelty – being the “Aunt” that they all love because I’m so different from their mommies – and I really love that too. Embracing our differences is so nice, and I’m confident it’ll make me a better mom one day.

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  15. I join the “Aunts Club” in July and it was hard at first but your so right about learning from their experiences. Now I get to be the cool Aunt and I cannot wait! We will be super mom’s with all the advice we get to absorb between now and our Moms Club entry!

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  16. One day we will be members!! I know that, but it is still hard because most of my friends kiddies are grown up now, so I’ll have no one in the baby zone while they’re all in the grade school zone. It does make it hard.

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    • Thanks girl!! I can’t WAIT for the post of you announcing your miracle!!! Every morning I open up my wordpress “reader” and scroll for blogs with a pic of a positive test! I love seeing them! They give me so much hope! HUGS!

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  17. This is great, Elisha. A much better way of thinking about this separation between fertiles and infertiles. What an idea, to just listen and collect knowledge! Heart you always, girl!!

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    • Thank ya girl! I figured I could go home and put about it, sit there and be bitter and not listen (then be mad later down the road when I have my own kids that I didn’t listen), or embrace the fact that my time IS coming and I should enjoy the journey while I wait. Besides…my coffee is hot while I drank it…there’s is cold because of all the “mommy do this” and “mommy do that”. Might as well enjoy it now 😉

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  18. When we moved to Georgia and were going through fertility treatments, a lady at our church invited me to a new moms group that met once a week in the morning. I declined, because we were in the thick of struggling with infertility and I could not imagine being able to keep it together week after week. I have neither seen nor spoken to that lady since that day, but now I wish I had taken her up on her offer… learned to be happy for all those moms, and learned from their experiences. By focusing on myself, and my own sense of lack, I think I really missed an opportunity that God laid right at my door. All of that to say that this is a really great post!!!

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