The baby and toddler years will always be amongst my most memorable memories. It wasn’t easy finding a group of women who felt the same exact way I did about mommying.
We shared insecurities, secrets, tips, and truly gave each other what was left of us that we didn’t give to our children.
Then -- something changed.
Maybe when my youngest went to kindergarten. When I began to work again. When I got diagnosed with an unexpected illness.
Suddenly, I could see clearly what I could not observe, or did not want to notice:true friendship.
And one person, who I thought was the most giving of people, upon closer inspection, really was not. Oh, there was the giving. Groceries in particular. She always came laden with them. And liked to give me gifts that I neither needed, sought nor could use.
What she had trouble giving -- was herself. I noticed when I talked, she rarely listened. I babysat for her child way out of proportion to her watching mine. Then there were the unkind words that sometimes found their way out of her mouth. They were always so shocking that I pretended they were unsaid.
One day, after a particularly virulent spiel -- I could no longer ignore my internal voice. It yelled: MOVE ON!
The problem: her daughter and my daughter are great friends and I don’t want that ruined. We also run in similar circles.
This is where being a mother and the wisdom I’ve hopefully gained must come into play. This is not about me. This is not about her. This is about our children.
Still, there is sadness for what once and for what will no longer be.
I’ve always tried to create family from friends. My best friend at 11 is still my best friend today. I laugh as hard now with my college friends as I did with them back when we were in our 20s (a-hem, that being just a year or two ago).
I’ve been fortunate to have lived around the country and have friends in each place where I have resided. And I have incredible mommy friends who will be my sister-friends forever.
I am happy that by putting an end to something that once was beautiful but is now toxic, I am taking care of myself and I will be watchful for my daughter.
I will also be something else – mature, graceful and kind. The qualities I want my children to have.
There is legacy and lesson in that.
By Dawn Yun
Labels: baby, By Dawn Yun, kindergarten, toddler
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