Friday, April 11, 2008

New friends....or OLD friends?


Yesterday the kiddos and I drove into Portland and met up with some mommy friends and all of their assorted kiddos at OMSI. It was pretty wild because I was meeting up with two other moms that I have technically known for six years or so, but who I have never met.

When I was pregnant with Banana, my old college roommate (Hi Tracey!) was a member of an online pregnancy and child rearing support board called storknet. She got me completely and totally hooked on the pregnancy forums. I was in a "storkclub" with a bunch of other women from all over, and we were all due to have babies in the same three month time period. We talked about everything, from child rearing to cravings to insomnia. Very tight bonds began to form - we gave each other support with the good and the bad, and we helped to calm each other's fears or to give support when someone got less-than-great news. We depended on each other. And when the babies came, we all moved on to a whole new adventure - some of us with our first child, some of us with our second, third, or even fourth. But most of us stayed in touch.

Then when Banana was about three or four months old, I was having a really difficult time nursing her. I was desperate and frantic for support - a brand new first time mama who really didn't have a clue what I was doing. (God if I had only known then what I know now, but that's a whole different rant.) Anyway, I started looking on other online communities and made some new "friends" and received great advice from one other board in particular (which shall remain unnamed, LOL). When I found out that several of the mommies from my original storkclub had also migrated over to the new place, I was hooked.

So for six years, I have talked to these women almost daily. They were there for me when my second and third babies were born. They were sweet and wonderful when we had a miscarriage, and again when we had a dangerous ectopic. When my Dad got sick, they were some of the first people I turned to for help, for prayers, and for tears. They know about all of my struggles and all of my victories, and a few of them are counted among my closest friends.

So to meet two of them in person yesterday was a blast. It was a little bit like a blind date. I was nervous! But when all was said and done it was fun and surreal and just a general hoot. It was like seeing old friends for the first time. Hell, that's exactly what it was. We went to OMSI and took the kids out for pizza and when we got into the van to head home much MUCH later than I ever could have imagined, I realized how much I depend on my mommy-board friends. But now to put faces and hugs with those user names....well that's really neat.

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