Sometimes you make a new friend just in the nick of time…

I was a new Mom. I didn’t know anything except what I had read in books and what strangers yelled at me from across the library at storytime: “What kind of Mother ARE you? Don’t you know carrying your baby in a Baby Bjorn will cause hip dysplasia?!!”  I also had MY Mother’s advise: “We did things differently when you were a baby. We just put you in the crib, threw in a few bottles and checked back in a week.”  My brother was no help. He had 3 year old twins. All he ever said was, “Dude, you have NO IDEA! You only have 1! What’s the big deal? I could do 1 with my eyes closed!” Yeah, that helped. So, when Nate started crying hour after hour, I thought I must be the worst Mother in history. He was 6 weeks old and I wasn’t getting more than 2 hours of sleep a night…and that wasn’t even in a row! He was colicky. I was so sleep-deprived, I tried to feed my husband, Mark the bottle one night.

Then one day, Nate had been crying for over 2 hours, so I decided to try to take him for a walk. (only because the coin landed on “heads”. If it had been “tails” I would have sold him on Ebay) I strapped him into the Baby-Bjorn, crippling- sling and headed out my front walk. That’s when I saw Julia. She was walking around the corner of my block. There was a light around her head and I heard angels singing, “Hallelujah”. Well, that’s how the setting sun and my neighbor’s car radio appeared to my weary Mommy-senses. Then I realized that she was wearing her baby strapped to her chest, too! (But her sling was an organic hemp, Maya-wrap made by peasants from an impoverished country who used the money they made selling the wraps to feed their starving families and save their children from Darth Vader’s evil empire…but I digress…) Julia walked up to me with a huge smile on her face and said, “Hi!”.  All I could say was, “Hey…you’ve got a baby and I have a baby…wanna be friends?” I think Julia must have seen the desperation in my eyes and my poor son imprisoned in the Bjorn Baby-Mangler and took pity on us.

Thank God.

Me and Nate (Who's fighting to keep his hips in place! )

Me and Nate (Who's fighting to keep his hips in place)

Because of Julia’s friendship and Mommy-camaraderie, I not only have my sanity back but Nate’s legs are straight as an arrow.  Julia is my Earth-Mother. She’s a fun playdate for me and my boys, she’s a sympathetic ear when I need to vent,  and she gives me advise when I’m about to mistakenly poison my family. Julia and her family are also self-proclaimed, “Urban Homesteaders”. I thought that meant they were taking the tax deduction for living in her house full time. But no, it means that she and her husband, Eric, are trying to live life simple, green and self reliant. They actually grow their own food in their yard, make their children’s toys from sticks and yarn and {gasp!} they don’t have a television! Don’t believe me? Go see for yourself and come back. I’ll wait…..        See! I told you! And I can also tell you that it’s not just staged for the blog…it’s all real! She really made marshmallows from scratch…even after I told her you can buy them at the store.

Now, I know that I could NEVER be a homesteader. (Heck, it’s all I can do to try to remember to turn off the water when I brush my teeth.) But I’m very proud to tell you that lots of Julia’s “green” has rubbed off on me and made me a better wife, mother and person. (Although, the pants-sewn-from-bandannas she made me make might get Nate beat up at nursery school!) I can only hope that “whatever” I’ve rubbed off onto Julia has helped her in some way, too.  

I AM certain that Julia will be my friend until we’re both old and gray…sometime next week.

Julia and her boys, Owen & Emett met up with me, Zeke & Nate in Las Vegas, Baby! That would be MY influence rubbing off on Julia. But we did manage to find a shark reef in the middle of the desert!

Julia and her boys, Owen & Emmet met up with me, Zeke & Nate in Las Vegas, Baby! That would be MY influence rubbing off on Julia. But we did manage to find an educational shark reef in the middle of the desert!