Well, today is Thanksgiving, we actually had our family dinner together yesterday and will spend the next week consuming the leftovers. I always err on the side of caution, as a result, I end up making too much food. I'm sure a lot of it will be going in the freezer tonight, once I thaw out.
Today I took DS1 to the farm, the FREEZING COLD FARM with two mom friends I've had for nearly 4 years. One friend I met at a coffee shop after putting out an ad online, desperate for company while on mat leave. She was larger than life, still is! She had a little girl about a year older than the rest of us. She was the only one who couldn't sit still as her baby wasn't content to just cuddle in our arms, and she kept warning us "Just wait!" Several months later, she laughed, watching me stumble through the same stage...what are friends for?
My other friend, the cold hating friend (who ironically suggested this freezing cold outing and cheered us out of our warm houses) I can still remember meeting her at a playdate, bringing in her baby in the carrier, we didn't hit it off, I don't even think in the chaos, we managed more than a few words. It wasn't until later in the year that we started meeting regularly for coffee with larger than life friend, and that we started getting close. However by then, it was getting close to the end of her mat leave, and I wondered if she too would drift out of my life as many mom friends do after that first year. Top that off with Larger than life friend moving 50kms away, I was worrying.
Well larger than life friend started getting scarce as she was by then pregnant with her DD2 and went on self imposed seclusion as she had a habit of biting people's heads off, almost literally too! But despite mat leave, cold hating friend and I continued to build our friendship. Spurned on by our two little guys who adored each other.
Well, three years later, we were at the farm, shivering and chasing our broods around, trying to prevent them from breaking some limb on the play equipment and snapping obligatory photos here and there...when our fingers weren't threatening to snap off as they froze. Somehow, we managed to get in some jokes, share some stories, compared notes and herding the group of kids, aunties and mommies having the same sort of authority over the kids, who over the years have gotten used to aunties telling them what to do just as much as mommies, in addition to kissing boo boos, cheering them on and giving hugs where needed.
I tried hard this weekend to try and single out something to be thankful for, but amid the chaos, it's been hard. However somehow out in the freezing farm amusement park, I felt thankful for the friends I made. I just mentioned two of them, who have been constant fixtures in my mom career for the past 4 years, but I've been lucky in this span of time to make many more. Friends who I cook with, friends who I craft with, friends who I torture husbands with, or friends to share movies, hockey, TV shows, or a non mom friend who my kids adore as much as any member of their family.
Some friends have only made brief appearances in my life, and some haven't worked out, but I don't open up very easily, so all of my friends have made an impact on my life, for better or worse. I don't have a large family, in fact, much of my childhood was dysfunctional and I craved the stability of people I could always count on. You can't very well conjure up a brother or sister for yourself, but you can count yourself blessed by finding good friends and my kids will always have aunties and uncles to call on, and for that I am thankful.