Another lunch out today – yeah me!! I mean, really – YEAH for me. Two meals in two days that did not involve cutting up anyones food, a kiddie menu or me doing dishes. This makes it a banner week despite the craziness at work and sheer exhaustion at home.
The other day, my good friend K invited me to lunch. Now, as good of friends as K and I are - we never do things without our kids. We even took them to the beach together. So, when she asked I immediately thought either something is wrong (as in I’ve pissed her off in some unforeseen way) or she has big news (like they are moving away, which BTW would send me off the way deep end.) Then, I pulled my proverbial head out of my butt and realized it was just two busy moms meeting for lunch. Without our offspring. Lunch at one of my favorite restaurants and we both agreed that we need to do it more often. It was like a grown up happy meal minus the crappy toy. We were quite pleased with ourselves. Note to my co-workers, I refrained from the white sangria though it was calling my name…..
Last night, I was in the mood to yak on the phone. Now, I knew my nightly call to my Big Susan M was in the very near future but we don’t talk until our mini-me’s go to bed (yes, we have a nightly ritual that involves overall catch up during which one or both of us eat, drink, yell at our pets and use the bathroom all while on the phone.) T is on the other side of the world (literally) for another few days so I couldn’t check in with her (though wouldn’t it have been cool to say we talked while she was on the Great Wall of China??) It was too late for my sister-in-law, S, (another person who I talk to about absolutely everything and nothing) and L would be chasing down two very active little boys. It dawned on me that I had no one to talk to.
For all the wonderful and amazing friends I have here, we rarely chat on the phone. You know – the old-fashioned catch up – talk about your day, your kids, your job, the dumb-ass behind the counter at Target or that great deal on a dress – kind of way. Because we Facebook instead. I see where my friends have checked in, checked out and what they are listening to. I read snippets of their day and admire their pics. But it’s just not the same as hearing a voice and just having a good chat. As a side note, this just makes me ache to hear my mother’s voice. We talked multiple times during the day and she was just as thrilled to hear me tell her about something mini-me did as she was to hear me say, “Just driving home and wanted to check in.”
When I get together with friends, we usually have a purpose – dinner and a movie, a playdate with the kids, the pool, a birthday party or holiday gathering. They are planned get-togethers that have a clear goal. None of that last minute “meet ya at the mall” kind of thing where we may wander for a few – looking, mocking and maybe buying – with or without our kids. No quickie, “Wanna grab dinner? I don’t feel like cooking,” kind of nights. Oh they happen, but it’s normally just me and mini-me.
Is this a product of having a young kid? Or, are we so scheduled that we simply can’t function without checking the calendar? M and I managed to do this when we lived near one another but I think we’re
weird different – we parent the same, have the same approach to things and our kids are used to being dragged around spending quality time with their moms and their moms friends. If either kid hears “girls!” in some random store and they immediately appear back by our sides. Doesn’t matter who yells it. Could be the woman two aisles away but our girls won’t risk it.
Lunch with K today just reminded me that an informal get together is to be relished- we just chatted (okay, yes we talked about our kids.) I know our lunch was scheduled – but it was really an email the other day just asking if I could do lunch. I said yes, we picked a place and that was it. No negotiating of calendars or times. No working around birthday parties, babysitters or conference calls (okay, I'll be honest, I blocked my calendar so I wouldn't have to rush.) Next time, I’m going to
unload leave my mini-me with hers and I know her gem of a husband will monitor the frenzy so we can go wander through Home Goods, grab coffee and just catch up. I won’t even write it on my calendar, block my calendar or schedule an "alarm" but I have no doubt I’ll remember it.