reaching out

I’ve mentioned how lately I’ve been feeling isolated, alone, and desperate for adult friends. Going to playgrounds by myself with the toddler, going to fairs and playgroups and libraries by myself with a toddlers, cooking for and eating dinner by myself with a toddler, well… it’s all become somewhat depressing. I found that lately I cling to work, I feel desperate for the adult connections of days past, and even have a hard time getting up and facing a new day.

I have been reaching out though. Reaching out online to single mom blog friends (hi Lindsay!), reaching out to facebook friends, reaching out to co-workers, and to family members. And guess what? It’s kind of working! I felt like I’d sound like a desperate, pathetic loser (and maybe I have), but I’m also getting just what I wanted: the opportunity to spend time with friends and family that I otherwise would not have had had I said nothing.

First of all, I made a friend on the playground. This is hard for me to believe, because my impromptu conversations with other playground moms has never resulted in… well, in anything. But somehow, I finally started conversing with a perfect stranger (also there by herself with a toddler) that led to us exchanging contact info and actually really, truly enjoying each other’s company! She’s also a single, working mom in my area, and we met up again at a local Relay for Life event. Being very introverted, I felt buoyed and inspired by the fact that I actually made a friend, and I’m super happy that we’re going to keep each other company again tomorrow at our local county fair. OMG, actual adult company, it sounds so seriously amazing.

Then, Saturday, my sister came out with her new husband, my niece and my brother-in-law’s son, and we had a nice evening on the lake with all the kids playing. I also went to the annual lake picnic and connected with someone I went to high school with who is a stay-at-home mom and with whom I exchanged numbers (so hopefully we’ll have some playdates). The next day, on the heels of all this socializing, I was feeling bored and sad again, so I texted about everyone I knew, including my aunt. She invited us over, and we spent the day with her, and my cousin, and it ended up being a wonderful impromptu get-together that never would’ve happened had I not reached out! She often watches her grandson, who is M’s age, and now we’re meeting them at the splash pad they go to every week. Another family friend of mine and I set up a day to take Mariah out for ice cream and swimming, because I reached out to ask her if she was free anytime in the coming weeks.

I ended up going back to work, where I’m setting up some playdates with co-workers who have kids, and also setting up some kid-free outings with some co-workers that I really get along with. Who knew, sometimes you just have to ask! I’m feeling a little better now, like I may actually have some people to socialize with, and I’m also feeling loved. I’m so glad I made the effort!

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5 Comments »

  1. I know that life with a toddler problem too. It was so hard in Chicago. I did not fit in with my neighborhood mom’s group. Most of my old friends didn’t have kids. The few that did already had lives… I got so bored with the playground rotation and dreaded going and being ignored by other parents. That is so great that you made a mom friend at the park! Even for extroverted me it can be hard. I had some regular friends I was hanging out with here but it has tapered off again 😦 today is just housework and hanging out at home.

  2. I am similarly introverted and most of my friends who have kids the same age as my kids work while I’m off in the summers or live at least 40 minutes away from me. The thing about feeling sad or being in a funk is that it’s hard to have the energy to make the effort to do the very things that will make you feel better! I’m glad you reached out and that you’re having the adult contact you need to balance things out.

  3. It’s hard, as an introvert, to balance the time you need with people, and the time you need alone to recharge, and when you add in little ones, it can be crazy. So glad you found the strength to keep reaching out!

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