Thursday, January 11, 2007

Playgroup Adventures

I took both babies to playgroup yesterday by myself. This is a first. Usually J comes with me. Or I don’t go. But the kiddos are starting to be okay playing on the floor or whatever and not starving all the time, so I could swing it.

Everyone seemed far more impressed by this feat than I thought was warranted.

One of the other moms held her own kid plus another kid for a minute and said something to the effect of “Oh, so this is what it’s like for you!” (To be fair, I know she didn’t mean that in the way it sounds.) And then I took one of the kids so she didn’t drop him. Apparently, carrying two 5-6 month old babies takes practice.

Topics for discussion included crawling (one of the other babies is working on it), swim lessons (whether 6 months is too young and what’s the point anyway), and the big one: how many kids everyone wants and when. Yeah. I had to sit through a whole lot of “I think we’ll start trying again when he’s one” or “We want them spaced three years apart, so we have some time” or “I just can’t imagine being pregnant again yet, but my sister-in-law’s coworker’s cousin had a baby the same time and is pregnant again...”

I’m becoming a bit disillusioned by this playgroup. It’s not the first time I’ve felt like the odd one out. And the twin thing is only part of it. For the most part, my priorities and values are divergent from the group. That may be because the current group is all the moms who have not returned to work. No, that’s not it. Because there are a couple of people I think are my kind of people. But it’s big, and chaotic, and it’s hard to explain our differing views and needs and expectations.

I did comment, gently, that while I hoped things went as planned, people shouldn’t just expect that they could so carefully plan things. I suppose for some of these women, that’ll mean they get pregnant a year sooner than they’d like, but whatever.

My mom got a holiday letter from a family we’ve known since I was tiny - the older daughter and I were in a playgroup together, actually. In the letter, the parents mentioned that the daughter and her husband were planning to add to their family this year. I don’t know if I’m more bothered by the notion that they think they can plan it, or by the fact that the parents announced it in the holiday letter. Eeesh.


  1. Good for you for going it solo! I'm glad you got out on your own with the kiddos, but I'm sorry playgroup isn't necessarily all that fun. Maybe in a few more months once the kids are interacting more, and it becomes more about them than the other moms?

  2. Ah yes, the "2 years is the ideal age gap" and "I want a summer baby" conversations- must be nice for them to plan their lives so well. And yeah, its hard to find friends with kids the same age that a) you'd want to hang out with anyway even if there were no kids, and b) you have similar parenting styles/philosophies. If you find a friend or two that fit those two criteria, cling to them for dear life and find opportunities to do things together (coffee, play dates, etc.).

  3. I think I will always carry the ghosts of our infertility struggle and inwardly cringe when someone else is so blase' about their plans to try again and how they know to the month how long they will wait and exactly how many they want.
    I admit sometimes I even cruelly think (for a minute or two) that maybe it wont be so easy for them next time and then they will see what it is like. Truly, I wouldnt wish the pain of what we went through on anyone, but it does still hurt to hear others be so cavalier about their next child.

    Sigh, I know.