I remember sitting in a “Baby 101” class when the teacher said, “after the baby is a few months old, you need to find your tribe.”
I was very pregnant and very overwhelmed and the idea that I needed to birth a baby, keep a baby alive for a few months and then venture out into this vast city and find my tribe kept me up at night.
“But, but…I have a tribe! They just…don’t have babies yet.”
“Where the hell am I going to find my tribe? Where is my tribe hiding?”
“Probably Starbucks. Or Bloomies. Or somewhere that serves really great burgers.”
“I’m never going to find them. I’m going to be friendless and alone and Lukey is not going to encounter another child until he goes to pre-school, where he will be the weird kid who has never encountered other children.”
(Pregnant women are nuts.)
Turns out, the first member of my tribe was sitting in the waiting room of my pediatrician’s office. We got to talking and realized that our babies were born a day apart, at the same hospital.
Once I had her—my very first mom friend!—things got so much easier. A weight was lifted. Not only were we paranoid about the exact same things (the foundation of any friendship, truly), but we’d email about activities and plan to go to classes and trying new things is a lot less scary when you have someone to help you through the door with the stroller and sit next to you.
From then on, I acquired more and more of ‘my tribe.’
And it turns out, they’re pretty awesome. My tribe will order a glass of wine with you on a Tuesday at 1pm while you’re out for lunch with your wee ones because you can. My tribe will text about having shared a Domino’s pizza with their baby for dinner because “he just turned one…I felt it was time.” My tribe will make the same side-eye at the competitive moms at the park, the ones comparing children like resumes.
Except, we just moved.
And now my tribe is 30 miles and a river crossing away. (A universe away if you consider that we’ve gone from city life to idyllic suburbia.)
And here I am in a town where I don’t know anyone except for my 60 year old realtor.
I keep reminding myself that there is more than one tribe. That I will find mine in time. That all I need to do is think back to that girl, 9 months pregnant and convinced she wouldn’t make one mom friend, let alone multiple mom friends.
She went out in the world and she put on a smile and she found people who also don’t mind drinking during the day around small children (one glass, I swear).
Those people exist here too. (I hope.) It’s like moving on after a break-up: wallow with some ice cream for a bit then stop idealizing your ex and put yourself out there.
Tribe #2, I’m comin’ for ya. (And when I do, we’re going to have a word about the overabundance of khaki shorts around these parts.)