I’m not a person who requires a great deal of social interaction. One might even call me a loner. I never really felt alone. As someone who writes I’m almost never without a character’s voice chatting away in my head, anyway.
Friends used to come by my house to play and I was invariably in the middle of a project. I used to grab the first book I could find and pretend to be so involved I couldn’t play.
“Sorry, I’m right in the middle of a chapter.”
“You sure do read a lot.”
My sixth-grade self found it a very valid excuse.
But motherhood is a strange dichotomy. You’re lonely but you’re never alone. You’re without someone to talk to, but never without someone talking. You’re busy from morning till night and get nothing accomplished. You’re constantly standing over a stove, but never eat anything hot. Your nipples have never gotten so much action, but you’ve never felt less sexy.
In one minute you go from the ethereal revelations of first words and baby kisses to elbows deep in toilet water scrubbing poop out of superhero underwear.
Motherhood. It changed me.
Suddenly, I was lonely. The voices in my head couldn’t get a word in edgewise. And when the barista asked me how my day was, you better believe she heard every stitch of it, occasionally unto salty tears, mostly mine.
So, moving to a new place hasn’t been easy. I’ve been mourning a bit for the friends I left behind. And maybe I’ve been pouting a little about having to go in from scratch again. I wouldn’t say I’ve hit the point where I want to be social, but I have hit the step right before that one, the mommy loneliness.
My perceptive husband came in last week and let me know, “Barbara, it’s time to get a Mom’s group.”
Well, if there’s one thing I got from my family, it’s the inability to come to a decision coupled with a blazing resentment when anyone tells me what to do. So, after five minutes of looking at Mommy meet-ups I called it good.
And last week I put it off as I was in the throes of another book, my own, chip chip chipping away. I was writing so much I don’t think we left the house for a few days. Oops.
Well, my husband came home Friday and saw the state of things. And he took us all out to the park for a little airing which, I acknowledge now, was desperately needed.
And wouldn’t you know? I met a very nice Mom who invited me to her Mommy group.
So, this week’s project, besides chip chip chipping away at my book, is to be social.
Somehow writing a novel seems more attainable.
Mommy group is tomorrow. I think I’m nervous. I feel something like it in my belly.