I hosted a Mother's Blessing last night for Kim who's due with her second child, this one a boy to join her beautiful almost-three-year-old girl. Karen did all the work, I just opened up my home and tried to make it look less like the sinking pit of grime it has become. Thanks to the ladies in my playgroup, that was a WHOLE lot easier to do (Thank you, again!). Karen had all these activities planned but we ended up sitting around the living room eating the awesome desserts people brought and just talking. There were drawings of penises, both circumcised and natural; there was talk of pooping while birthing; there was the struggles of breastfeeding, how to deal with night weaning... it was an amazing discussion that went on for hours. Rocks were never painted, foot baths never prepared and I don't think anyone cared one bit, we were having such a great time.
I didn't actually know most of the women there personally, although all of them I knew by reputation. My living room was a who's-who of local theatre moms and it was so wonderful to get to know these powerful, beautiful women as mothers. It's easy to be in awe of that one's talent as a director and that ones brilliance on the stage. It's much harder to actually know those people and yet last night, it was the easiest thing I've done in ages, everyone was so open and warm.
Kim gave out the greatest gift of the evening. She went around and talked about how she knew all of us and why she valued us in her life. She told me that I was like a warrior, always striving to tell the truth and call people on their shit. To which I replied, "Yes, I'm very good at sticking my foot in my mouth!" But I got what she was saying and appreciated it so much. It's lovely to think of myself as a warrior, rather than an opinionated, loud mouth who always thinks she should be heard. I am constantly working on listening with respect and not tumbling over someone elses opinions with my own, shoving the research and experience I've gathered into their face. Nobody can listen when they feel attacked and my passion for my subject often comes across as a bit too intense, I fear. I must be getting better at it if she dubbed me with such a fine title and that was a pleasure for me to hear.
And now I have a fridge full of amazing food. I'm thinking I need to host a party every week so that I'm forced to keep this place clean and can keep the fridge stocked with other people's cooking. And if every party could include a moment where we all tell each other why we value the other? Well, I think my heart would be full as well.
What would you say to your favorite peer mama? How would you show them your appreciation and love?