For those of you ladies (or dudes) that desire to be friends with your buds that have kids.. but aren't sure how... I thought I could offer some insight!
Insight #1: THINGS ARE GOING TO CHANGE: its a fact. accept it, and the sooner that you do, the better! I promise! We still WANT you to be in our lives.. but we cannot give you the same attention that we used to!
Insight #2: BABYSITTERS ARE EXPENSIVE: So yes... you ask us to go out on a double date, or come to your party, or wedding where kids aren't allowed... but what you DONT understand is HOW expensive it truly is to have a babysitter these days! Not to mention how truly if we are going to pay for a sitter... we want to do it for a DATE night with just momma and daddy :) SO yes, let's do that on special occasions, but don't be angry when we cannot come to every single thing!
Insight #3: Yes, right now we are only talking about breastfeeding, poop, spitting up stories, and oh the plethora of more delightful topics.. but if you show that you care about us by LISTENING through that... it truly means the world to us, remember that we have probably been home with an infant/ toddler all day, and we CRAVE adult talk!
Insight #4: It's NOT practical for US to come to YOUR house with child, at a random time. One, because its not baby proofed, and nap times and bed times are insane! Our lives revolve around naps, feedings, and teething for at least a good few years! Accept that, and love us anyways and try to work around our schedule, if you can... without making us feel bad about it!
We have been super blessed to have a few good friends who aren't parents yet, stick around with Brandon and I through this journey of parenting.
Two of the best friends we have ever had, Niki & Jordan (who are now moving back to Slovenia as missionaries... see more here) are GREAT at supporting us in our parenting role in life.
A few little tidbits I have picked up from them that I think they do GREAT at, that I thought I would share!
1. Be involved with their kid. Pretend that you like babies, even if you dont. Offer to hold them, attempt to put them to sleep (even if the mom laughs at your face... haha right Nik?), and care about their milestones, birthday parties, and how fast they are growing, and FOR GOODNESS SAKES, MEET THE BABY!!!
2. Go to THEIR house. Nik & J have come over about every other Friday for the past year or so. Its been SO fun. They come over usually around 7:30, and hang out with us in OUR home, so that our child can sleep, and we dont have to pay for a babysitter.
3. NEVER, EVER, EVER comment about the house being messy or "you can tell a kid lives here!". Uhm yes. ANY parent's house will be a DISASTER at almost all hours of the day. HAVE GRACE and know that its hard enough to shower let alone pick up the house!
4. BRING MEALS OR SNACKS: Okay, so Niki is a glorious BAKER which we adore about her. Almost every time she comes over, she brings a snack, a baked treat, or something yummy! THIS IS SUCH a blessing, and really does make us feel so well cared for!
5. ASK INTENTIONAL QUESTIONS: So it's really easy to talk about our kids, as parents. Its pretty much all we think about on any given day. This you most likely will not FULLY understand until you are in our shoes, BUT we love to answer intentional questions.. it just may catch us off guard.
Some examples of this can be: "How is motherhood affecting you?", "What is the easiest/ hardest part of parenting for you?" "What advice do you have for someone who wants to have a family some day?" "Who has been your biggest support?" "How can I support you better? YOU the person you are.. not just you as a mother/ parent"
These are all things that our amazing friends truly do SO well. We know that they care about us, about our family, and it truly means the world to us! We're going to miss them SO much while they serve in Slovenia for at least the next five years, but we will fully love and support them as they do what God has called them to overseas!
Love you Nik & Jordan, so grateful for your friendship, thank you for being such amazing friends to Brandon and I!