I need something totally different from my friends now that I'm a mom

Not someone who is just like me, but one who models who I hope to be.

I need something totally different from my friends now that I'm a mom

I didn't know I needed her.

We think what we need in a friend is someone just like us. Shared values, similar aesthetic. Someone who understands us completely and will never make us feel uncomfortable.

But when she walked into the library that day, wearing a shaved head and cut-off jean shorts, my heart jolted and my gut urged me to act. I was drawn to her like a mama of a newborn is drawn to caffeine.

She commanded attention by her very presence. She appeared strong and bold and stood out in our small, homogeneous town. I think maybe I loved her from that first introduction when I forced myself out of my introverted, weary shell to say hello. I didn't want her to get away.

Later I would learn that she didn't really trust me at first, and felt herself building a wall of defense based on preconceived ideas about who I was. She felt a little weary herself—tired of judgment and trying to fit in. Maybe we're all a bit battle-scarred.

It was not until weeks later that we uncovered a beautiful truth: we fit together.

I'm quieter and more conservative; I love wearing black. She strings her home with prayer flags and clothes herself in color. But we fit together.

Outward appearance does not tell the full truth about what lies inside. To get to the treasure you need to get your hands dirty. My most precious relationships have come when I let my heart lead on paths my head did not fully understand.

What I'm looking for in a mom friend is not someone who is just like me but one who models who I hope to be: a woman who carries herself with strength and dignity.

A woman who is a questioner, a beauty seeker; one who forges her own messy path and invites me to share in the adventure.

I'm looking for a friend who challenges me and lifts me up when I'm sinking. And who lets me do the same for her.

A woman who does not settle for status quo and is committed to growth. She makes mistakes and practices self-compassion. She sees me, actually likes me, and forgives quickly.

What I'm looking for in a mom friend is a human being that recognizes our worth does not come in our ability to perform, keep up or have it all together. All of the time.

She is authentic and cranky and drives me crazy sometimes with her quirks and strong personality.

And I love her all the more for it.

She doesn't keep me at arm's length or allow me to get away but pulls me close, into sisterhood, and does the work to stay connected though distance divides us.

She speaks life into me when I cannot breathe and tells me to turn my back when she spoons sugar into her coffee. We know each other's secrets and shame. We know we're safe.

What I'm looking for in a mom friend is one who mesmerizes me by how different she is from what I know and opens my eyes to the gifts in each soul I meet. She teaches me to do less talking and more listening. But also to speak up with the truth I believe she needs to hear.

She rejoices with me when I fly and grieves with me when my body and soul are heavy with pain and loss. She tells me when she needs me too.

There are turning points in our lives when beauty drops in unexpected. Unannounced.

That day she walked into the library all those years ago, was the day I learned what I was looking for in a mom friend.

10 must-have registry items that will change your life, mama

The baby gear heavy hitters that should be top of your list

Calling all mamas-to-be! It's a fundamental truth of (impending) motherhood that your prepping-for-baby To Do list can feel a mile long, but really the best way to feel organized is to sort out the most important item at the top of your list: your registry. Sure the items you choose to include will end up running the gamut from nice-to-haves to absolutely essential game-changers, but mamas in the know quickly learn one thing: Not all baby gear is created equal.

So while you can and should pepper your registry with adorable inclusions that aren't necessarily can't-live-withouts (go ahead, add 'em!), you should make sure you're ticking the boxes on those pieces of baby gear that can be absolute life savers once you're in full-blown mama mode. From car seats to bouncers and playmats, your play and travel gear will be some of the most obvious important items on your list, but so can unexpected things, like a super comfy baby carrier and a snooze-inducing white noise machine. So to help you sort through the must-have options, we turned to the holy grail of motherhood that is buybuy BABY and handpicked 10 of the very best essential pieces that will change your life, we promise.

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Our Partners

Every week, we stock the Motherly Shop with innovative and fresh products from brands we feel good about. We want to be certain you don't miss anything, so to keep you in the loop, we're providing a cheat sheet.

So, what's new this week?

Earth Mama: Effective, natural herbal care for mamas and babies

Founded and grown in her own garage in 2002, Earth Mama started as an operation of one, creating salves, tinctures, teas and soaps with homegrown herbs. With a deep desire to bring the healing powers of nature that have been relied on for thousands of years to as many mamas as possible, Melinda Olson's formulas quickly grew into Earth Mama Organics. Since then, the brand has remained committed to manufacturing clean, safe and effective herbal solutions for the entire journey of motherhood, including pregnancy, breastfeeding and baby care, and even the loss of a baby.

Bravado Designs: Soothing sounds for a good night's sleep

With 28 years of serving pregnant and postpartum mamas under their belt, Bravado Designs is a true authority on the needs of changing bodies. It's true that we have them to thank for rescuing us from the uncomfortable and frumpy designs our own moms had to live with. Launched in Canada by two young mamas, they designed the first prototypes with extra leopard print fabric certain that a better bra was possible. Throughout the years they've maintained their commitment to ethical manufacturing while creating long-lasting products that truly work.

The Sill: Instagram-ready potted plants

We've long admired this female-founded brand and the brilliant mind behind it, Eliza Blank. (She even joined Motherly co-founder Liz Tenety on and episode of The Motherly Podcast!) The mission behind the business was simple: To make the process of bringing plants into your home as easy as possible, and as wonderful as the plant themselves. With their in-house, exclusively designed minimalist planters, the end result makes plant parenthood just a few clicks away.

Not sure where to start? Here's what we're adding to our cart:

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Mom rage is real—and it's a sign that mothers' needs aren't being met

The truth is, anger—real, fist-clenching, heart-racing, uncontrollable anger—is so much more common among mothers than many of us think.

Maternal anger takes most women who experience it by surprise. I'm not this person, we say, after feeling a shocking swell of rage during one of those inevitable moments of frustration we all face as a parent.

I never thought I'd be "that mom" who yells at her family, we say, after snapping and yelling at our toddler.

I don't recognize myself when I feel like this—and I feel like this more than I want to, we say, when we realize that our anger isn't a temporary, one-time thing but an undercurrent in our day-to-day, an undeniable presence like a shadow.

The truth is, anger—real, fist-clenching, heart-racing, uncontrollable anger—is so much more common among mothers than many of us think. And it's time to talk about what "mom rage" is, where it comes from, and what we can do about it.

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