Before I became a mom, I had friends who were moms but I didn't have as strong a bond with them as I did once I joined the mommy hood club. It's no one's fault, really. I just couldn't understand why it was socially acceptable for someone to stand at cocktail party detailing the gory play-by-play of giving birth to her third child before I had my own birth stories to tell. Stories about babies didn't tug at my heartstrings until I had a baby of my own as well.
Did becoming a parent rewire my brain? Perhaps. Or perhaps it's just that until you've experienced the miracle of becoming a parent first hand, you really cannot relate to being a parent. How many times has someone told you that they love their dog as though he's their firstborn (Um, guilty!) and that's why they completely understand how you feel when your child has the flu? Truth is, they don't get it entirely. Sure, they feel strongly for their pup, but would they die for or kill for their pup? Unlikely.
The change happened almost overnight for me. One day, I was a flippant non parent, and the next I was a ferocious mama bear who was happy to spill the dirty deets about my emergency c-section to anyone who would listen at the grocery store.
And my mom friends? Well all of a sudden, I started to share an intense bond with them. Now, I was in club. The club of those who know what it's like to hold a little person in our arms and love them with every fiber of our being. The club of those who are beyond tired but are thrilled to be up at 3 am to see a little hungry face. The club of those who have a unique labor story to tell, chock-full of icky circumstances that in many places would be considered TMI.
Breastfeeding moms, formula moms and everyone in between. We are all moms. And this, my friends, is a very exclusive club.