My Mom Family and Day Drinking: The Birth of Monthly Mimosa Mornings
It all started with a leftover bottle of sparkling wine. My husband doesn’t drink wine often and I’m not going to drink a whole bottle of bubbly by myself, in one sitting, because that stuff doesn’t keep. So out of sheer practicality, I decided to invite my girls over for a mimosa or two while the kids were at school (day drinking at it’s finest!).
A little about my girls: Two awesome SAHMs, like myself, who are always too busy for fun or relaxation or hanging out. When I first moved to Iowa (12 years ago! Yikes, I’m old!) I was desperate for friends. We moved out here because my husband found a sweet job that we couldn’t pass up. So we packed up everything and moved to the great unknown. I quickly realized that I was super lonely and had to make some friends before I fell into a deep depression. I met Martha and her husband at a church get-together and a year or two after that I met Nicole and her husband. We have made so many great friends out here, by some miracle, since I’m a really huge introvert, but Nicole and Martha and I have become like family. We share similar values, senses of humor, pet peeves with our husbands and kids, etc. We are a mom-family who try to support each other in the tough times, celebrate the good times and endure the monotony of daily life.
As we all know, it’s difficult maintaining your relationships when you are adjusting to being a parent. And it’s isolating. You’re so wrapped up in a new human being that all the other human beings around you take a back seat. After having our first, I again realized, like I did when we first moved to Iowa, that if I didn’t reach out to my friends I would sink into a deep depression. It’s like making new friends all over again when you’re a new mom! You have to put the new mom you out there and hope they like the new you. And, again, being the introvert that I am I didn’t want to put myself out there. But I knew I needed to.
Social life when you’re not feeling particularly social. Fake it till you make it!
Since most of your days are filled with just surviving when you’re a new mom, your social life exists in text messages, on Facebook or Insta and running into friends at the grocery store (or church or gym, if you’re feeling extra). But those little moments of sanity, of being able to talk to another adult about adult things, even in the produce section, mean so much. They connect you to the life you had before but they also sustain you when you might be at your wits end. To feel not alone in the struggle, to be validated, to have a mom-family who understands the ups and downs of breastfeeding (or bottle feeding), annoying kids, allergies, “women's troubles”, health issues, sometimes unhelpful or too busy husbands, weight gain, weight loss, fertility issues, etc. etc. etc. is not just nice, but necessary.
So out of practicality and necessity and just a love of mimosas and breakfast food we started a mimosa morning tradition. Every family has traditions and this is ours. We get together with as few distractions (aka, kids) as possible and eat yummy food and drink yummy drinks and just allow each other to be ourselves. In all the messiness of our lives, we can be okay with it. We can day drink and be okay with it and focus on friendships and not laundry and be okay with it, and eat carbs and be okay with it. As a mom you learn to let a lot of the small stuff go and focus on what’s really important. Our friends are really important. Friends are necessary and it’s okay to take time to nurture those relationships.
Additionally, isn’t it a great example for our kids to see us in healthy friend relationships? When we show our kids how to focus on finding friends who share our values and help us in life and don’t hinder us, they will not only learn how to do it themselves but they will have more adult allies and a bigger support system. Win, Win, Win!
After our first mimosa morning we headed to the new Aldi and just did the most basic of mom-stuff. Grocery shopping. Because it doesn’t matter what you do, just do it together.
What do you do to nurture your friend family?
What traditions do you and your friend family have together?
If you don’t have any friend family traditions, how can you start one or two?
How can you be more intentional about finding and nurturing friendships that are with people who share your values?
Megan Gan is the Midwest mom of two very active boys, 4 and 7, and wife of a very busy husband, Wendell. When not managing the daily grind of work, school, trips to the YMCA, church-volunteering and ADHD-managing, the family loves visiting the local art museum and nature center, attending Cedar Rapids Kernels games, playing board games, airplane model and lego building and traveling.