Welcome to my Weblog!
Welcome to 1 Mother 2 Another! To read my most recent weblog entries, scroll down. To read entries from one category, click the links at right. To read my journey from the beginning, click here. To find out more about me, click here.
Top 5s
Short on time? Click here to go to my Top 5s Page - links to my top five recommendations in every category from Breastfeeding Sites to Urban Living Solutions.

The Truth Behind Play Dates

Maddie’s becoming quite the social
butterfly these days; she’s expanded her play date horizons
beyond hanging with her good friend from the neighborhood Naomi,
and is now making more of an effort to invite over or head to
friends’ houses in other boroughs. She’s been spending
more time with her friends from the church nursery and will soon
need her own Blackberry to keep up with her busy schedule.

As great as these play dates are for Maddie, though, I’ve got
to confess something.

I’m not scheduling these fun times so that my daughter gains
valuable interaction time, develops her inter-personal skills, or
learns how to make nice with others.

I’m doing this for me.

We recently went over to the house of my
friends href="http://leavened.blogspot.com">Rebecca and Graham; Rebecca
graciously arranged to use her house as a gathering point for their
daughter Elisabeth, my Maddie, and my girlfriend Abby’s two
boys Josh and Isaiah. While Maddie had fun bouncing around with the
other kids, I had a wonderful time eating snacks some other mom had
prepared and talking to other grownups for a while.

I remember spending Maddie’s first year wondering when
I’d get my own life back, and finally figuring out I never
will (sorry, new moms). But as she became more mobile, more
independent, and began to socialize at the park, I started seeing
that I wouldn’t have to spend the rest of my life devoting
every thought, every second, to Maddie’s immediate health and
development. Somewhere between a year and two years, you start
seeing toddlers yearn for interaction, and you’ll find that
you’re able to do a bit of chatting yourself.

On a daily basis, my neighborhood pal Ingrid keeps me sane. With
the weather so bitterly cold right now, the playground simply
isn’t an option, and Maddie’s got a whole morning to
fill with fun and exciting activities. So any time the wind chill
bottoms out you’ll see me and Ingrid taking turns bundling up
her child, grimly pressing forward in single digit temperatures as
we fight to walk the few blocks to the other person’s house.
Maddie and Naomi get to yell and scream with each other, and Ingrid
and I get to relax a bit, not work so hard to keep our respective
children occupied, and oh yes, have an adult conversation.

As Maddie gets easier to tote around and more amenable to car
rides, we’re expanding our horizons and seeing our church
friends more regularly. Which means that now I don’t have to
hurriedly catch up on a girlfriend’s life over coffee before
the sermon, but can sit back, eat a home-made scone, and gab with
girlfriends while Maddie bounces on Elisabeth’s bed.

Good for Maddie? You bet. But good for mommy, too. So if your
toddler’s at that age, get out there, girlfriend. Chat with
the neighbors on the street; start conversations at the park. I bet
you’ll find someone who has a child close to your age, is
compatible with your opinions on child-rearing, and is interested
in having a friend herself.

The sanity you save may be your own.


Post a Comment

House Rules

Here are the rules for posting comments on 1mother2another.com. Posting a comment that violates these rules will result in the comment’s deletion, and you’ll probably be banned from commenting in the future.

1) Register first. If you would like to post a comment, you must create an account with us. Check out the home page to do so.

2) Constructive comments only. If you cannot maintain a respectful tone in your posting, even in disagreement, your comment will be deleted. We’re all trying to find our way in this thing and are struggling to be the best moms we can. If you disagree with something I say, feel free to politely email me. If you disagree with another reader’s posting, you’re welcome to kindly post in reply. Vitriolic diatribes will be deleted. This site is about encouraging and supporting, not tearing down and chastising.

3) Questions welcomed. If an entry raises a question, you’re welcome to email me directly or post it. Keep in mind that postings will result in public replies by strangers and not just me.

4) Don’t steal. All original writings contained within this website are under copyright protection. If you link to us, please credit us as your source and provide a link back to our website. If you're interested in using an excerpt in published material, please contact us.

5) Share your photos! We'd love to have photos from our registered readers to show on our home page under "Maddie's friends". Email us a jpeg of your little one's best photo to photos@1mother2another.com. Please, no photos from professional photographers which fall under copyright protection.