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Aug 16 2013

Friday Night: A Love Letter to My Old Friends

By at 12:04 pm
adina kay-gross love letter to my old friends

Yep, that’s me on the right.

When you become a new mother, you spend a lot of time talking about making mom friends. I’ve written about it, as have countless others. We’ve thought it about it honestly, earnestly, and some times desperately. It’s as awkward as dating, it’s a necessary evil, and sometimes, in lucky circumstances, lifelong relationships are formed, relationships that can save us.

But when we become new mothers, we don’t often talk about old friends.

These are the friends who are very well having children in step with you, friends who remember when you, yourself, were a child. Friends who know your parents and know your siblings and slept on the floor in your childhood bedroom and slept on the floor in your college dorm room and saw you with the hair-sprayed bangs and the bad skin and the skinned knees and the broken heart. Read the rest of this entry →

Aug 1 2013

I Left My Kids for the First Time Ever & Didn’t Feel Guilty

By at 2:11 pm

tova ross reunionWhat happens when a neurotic and overprotective 27-year-old mom of two leaves her kids–for the first time ever–for a weekend with the girls?

Well, now that I asked, I actually had a lot of fun, thank you. So much fun that when my baby snubbed me in public upon our big reunion, I wondered if, crazily, she suspected how much fun I had and begrudged me for it.

I admit it: when I received an invite to my good friend’s bachelorette party weekend at a beach house, I was more excited than nervous about spending over two days away from my kids for the first time ever. I had been feeling a particular sense of ennui lately from the seemingly endless household chores and parenting tasks that must get done despite long days at work. The invitation seemed like a godsend. Read the rest of this entry →

May 9 2013

Can Moms & Dads Be “Just Friends?”

By at 9:54 am

mom and dad getting coffeeWe talk a lot here at Kveller about mom friends. Where to find them, how to make them, the care and feeding of… The ritual of proper playground hook-up etiquette has become a mating dance of its own, with questions of when to call, what it means when they don’t call back, and the fear of coming off as seeming too needy.

But, the reality is that, in the year 2013, odds are that the parent you end up hitting it off with by the sandbox, the one you begin looking forward to seeing to help break up the monotony of your day, the one you start fantasizing about asking out for coffee without the kids so you guys can really talk and maybe become real friends with–sans sandbox–could well be not a fellow mom, but a dad. Read the rest of this entry →

May 1 2013

How to Announce Your Fifth Pregnancy When Your Friends are Still Trying for One

By at 2:23 pm

number five blockTen years ago, just before I turned 30, I left my nuchal appointment for my first child, went straight to my work computer, and quickly banged out an “I’m Going To Be A Mother!” email to send to my 5,000 closest friends.

Few of my friends back then were married, let alone having kids. I was a pioneer (I later went on to become a pioneer among my peers in divorce, of course), and an oblivious one. It didn’t occur to me that other people’s reaction to my news could possibly be anything but happiness (mildly uncomprehending happiness, perhaps, but happiness nonetheless). Read the rest of this entry →

Apr 25 2013

A Man Named Justin, a Pony Named Besty & an Important Lesson Learned

By at 2:16 pm

young girl on pony rideLast Sunday, I learned a very important lesson while attending an event with my 4-year-old daughter, Adi.

At the event there were many engaging activities for children, including a pet farm, bouncing houses, a mini carousel, and face-painting. Adi lit up when she saw all her options and was especially eager to get a unicorn painted on her face. My focus, like many parents there I’m sure, was simply to let my child have fun with her friends, mingle with the other parents there, and enjoy the warm sunny beautiful day outside. Read the rest of this entry →

Jul 31 2012

A Little Girl Broke My Daughter’s Heart & I’m Mad

By at 11:43 am

sarah tuttle-singer little girl dancingSo, I wanted to cut a bitch today.

Which isn’t really anything new, except for one thing: This “bitch” was 3 1/2 years old.

(Watch the storm clouds roll in, people. It’s about to get real.)

It was the end of the year party in my daughter’s preschool–(Cue Sunrise Sunset and throw in a side of falafel and you get the idea.) And it’s kind of a big deal. My daughter has had quite a year. And while she’s weathered a shitstorm with a stalwart valor that humbles and inspires me, she is a sensitive child who survived some serious upheaval. And sometimes it shows.   Read the rest of this entry →

Jul 23 2012

Parent Dating: How to Pick Up New Friends

By at 2:45 pm
playground empty

The scene.

They tell you about the exhaustion, the hours of feeding, the diapers, and the cuddles. They don’t tell you about the revolving door your social life is about to become.

Parent Dating Phase #1: The Pregnancy Pick-Up

In the last month of my pregnancy with my son, I met three other women who were also eight months pregnant and lived in the same neighborhood. They were my early foothold into parent friendships. We cheered each other on when the boys (yes, all boys) were born, immediately started comparing notes on problems the kids were having, and had a few “playdates,” whatever that meant in the first year of their lives. One of them introduced me to a listserv of moms having children in the same month. October is a busy birthday party month for us now. Read the rest of this entry →

Mar 14 2012

The Man Date

By at 6:30 pm

two men drinking beer cartoonEarly in life, I think it’s easier for men to make friends than it is for women:

Kindergarten: I like soccer. Me too. Let’s be friends.

Middle School: I like girls. Me too. Let’s be friends.

High School: I can burp the periodic table. Me too. Let’s be friends.

College: I like beer. Me too. Let’s be friends. Read the rest of this entry →

Oct 18 2011

Keeping Up With Your Commitments

By at 10:14 am

We waited, and waited, and waited.

Sandwiched between returning from three months in Europe and moving to Austin, TX, we planned a four-day pit stop in New York to pick up some wayward items we left behind, see a few friends, and say farewell to my old dogs who have found a new home. My best friend’s son’s bar mitzvah in West Hartford, CT, landed right in the middle of our visit, and there was no question we would make the trip regardless of how inconvenient it would be or how jetlagged we were. My friend and I have shared in each other’s simchas (celebrations) whenever we could, and this was a big one. She was there when my son was born and she came in for our good-bye party, but more importantly, I knew how important this simcha was to her. Just like I felt that Aiven’s first birthday was a milestone for me, I knew that this bar mitzvah was a milestone for her, a celebration of all her hard work raising her son from infancy to manhood.

From Europe, we bought Megabus tickets and got a great deal. Our roundtrip tickets cost $14, about as much as the cab ride from the Upper West Side to the bus stop. We arrived at the bus stop a little early and stood in line. Aiven was asleep and the weather was pleasant, and we felt that the universe was smiling upon us. We were wrong. Aiven woke up and we kept waiting and waiting for the bus to arrive. Alex went to ask why it was delayed, and it was plain to see that the dispatcher was not getting any answers and was as frustrated as the rest of us. In hindsight I don’t know why we waited as long as we did before we sprang into action — was it our unreasonable optimism, the resignation of our fellow passengers, or the good weather that made it too comfortable to just keep waiting? Read the rest of this entry →

Oct 6 2011

Stranger in a Strange Kibbutz

By at 11:56 am

So, this is the post that might get me in trouble.

You know, as opposed to writing about my irabbit (and the rabbi,) my cross dressing son, and my boobies (again).

I’ve been in Israel for ten months, 23 days, and 15 hours.   Long enough to put down a few fragile roots.  Long enough to start feeling like maybe I can kind of sort of grow here.

But not really.

Because every day, I am reminded that I am different – in subtle ways that eat at me, I understand through words and gestures that the people here still see me as strange.

(Now, maybe some of that is my fault.  Maybe I am strange.  Maybe I’m too open, too chaotic.  Too eager to make friends.   Too Other. Maybe it’s the stripper stilettos. )

I’ve heard many things about myself through others:

“She’s too friendly.”

“She’s a snob.”

“She’s different.”

(Most days, I feel like the new girl in the cafeteria with no one to sit with.  I have braces and bad skin and a “KICK ME” sign stapled to my back. Only in Hebrew.) Read the rest of this entry →

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