Even though I’m happily married, I’ve found myself desperately wanting to get picked up. It’s shameless, really. I bring Rowan out to grab coffee, pick up groceries, play on the swings, and I can’t help but wish someone would chat me up and ask for my phone number. Anytime another parent with young children makes idle conversation with me, I secretly hope this will be the instantaneous connection I’ve been looking for.
You might be wondering if I’m happy at home, why am I prowling the parks for companionship? Because I just want a mom or dad friend.
To clarify, I do have friends (really!), some of whom are parents too. But unfortunately, they’re scattered all over the suburbs or out-of-state. And as much as I love my two close friends who live in the city, I can’t rely solely on them. So I’ve entered the world of mom dating, trying to connect with a fellow parent so we can swap stories and advice.
It’s been a while since I was on the market for a friend, but it’s just as nerve-wracking as I remember. Toss in my introverted personality and anxiety, and I’m a cocktail of adrenaline, desperation, and hope. Who wouldn’t want to be my friend?
Just like I was with real dating, I’m eager to connect but hesitant to make the first move. So far I’ve been able to make small talk with other parents, but I’m too shy to pull the trigger and suggest we intentionally run into each other in the future. I also have a hard time determining if they’re just being polite or are genuinely interested in friendship.
So I’ve decided to take Rowan to kid-centric activities where parents are more than likely open to making a friend. We’re starting out with swim class and story time, and I’ve got my sights set on a stroller group. I don’t have a strong lead on a potential friend yet, but these outings have helped build my confidence, a quality that I definitely want my son to pick up on as he gets older.