True life: Finding a mom friend feels a lot like dating

"Nice stroller," I nervously flirted. "Thanks," she replied, smiling sheepishly. "How old is your baby?"

True life: Finding a mom friend feels a lot like dating

While I was madly in love, I yearned for something more. Even though he stared googly eyed at me with pure admiration, he communicated only by screaming. Plus, he took “needy" to the next level.

Don't get me wrong – my newborn son was amazing in every way, but I desperately wanted something more. The days were long and lonely, and a maternity leave filled with endless rounds of feeding, changing, and laundering just wasn't gonna cut it for this new mama. It was time to begin the daunting process of “Mom Dating."

The Tinder

Since us moms do not get the option to sit home and swipe right, we have to venture outside to our local Starbucks or Mommy and Me classes to find a match. I met my best friend Lexi in the park, always a prime pickup spot. She looked “my type," and our baby boys seemed to be about the same age. I approached her, making that unnerving first move by pointing out that we had the same turquoise Bugaboos.

“Nice stroller," I nervously flirted.

“Thanks," she replied, smiling sheepishly. “How old is your baby?"

One thing led to another and before I knew it we were discussing which brand pacifiers were best, and whether we should let our babies cry it out in the middle of the night, known in Mom-lingo as “CIO," of course. Now this was getting interesting. Us new moms were “buzzed."

The First Date

But would I ever see her again? The conversation was coming to an end, and my only choice was to take a leap of faith and ask her out. Lunch seemed too bold. Better to start slow.

“Want to grab a coffee sometime?" I asked, holding my breath while I waited for a response.

“I would love to!" she replied.

And just like that, I got her number.

The Courtship

Two lattes and an amazing date later, I longed to text her, gushing my love and professing that I wanted to have our next babies together! But I knew I had to play it cool. I resisted the urge and sent a simple text:

“So fun today – let's do it again."

Three hours later … still nothing. Did she not feel the same? I must have misread her cues. She definitely met someone better.

And then I saw the “…" on my IPhone, making my heart aflutter.

“Sorry," she texted. “…"

Was this the end?

“Came home, put Jacob in for his nap, and passed out too. Today was great. Let me know if you want to go to Soul Cycle on Sunday with me."

I didn't even like Soul Cycle, but there you have it – a second date was naturally born.

Going Steady

After a few more dates, our relationship moved to the next level. We were “officially" friends. We finished each other's sentences, laughed at all the same jokes, and were the first to comment on each other's Facebook and Instagram posts. I even added her number to my “Favorites" on my phone. Love was in the air.

The Double Date

Now, it was time to up the stakes again and bring her “home" to meet the fam – my husband. A lot was riding on this. If the husbands hit if off, we could achieve the ultimate status of “Couples friends."

“Please don't mess this up for me," I cautioned my husband.

At dinner, I could barely eat I was so nervous. I quickly stole a glance across the table. Who knew there was so much fantasy football to discuss? I prayed it wasn't just the alcohol talking. But as we said our goodbyes, the guys were busy making plans for us to all watch the Giants game together. This was my idea of fantasy football.


Finally, we had it all. Husbands and wives both friends and babies the exact same age who now slept through the night (sometimes). What could be better? We honeymooned in a Hamptons VRBO and spent those first two years in complete infatuation, meeting for morning strolls and baby gym classes.

Until my move to suburbia a few years later. While Lexi and I spoke often on the phone, our long distance relationship was certainly harder to maintain. It was back to the dating pool for me.

Luckily they don't call it preschool “pickup" for nothing.

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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The 6 biggest lies I believed before having kids

Just about all of us had set assumptions about raising kids before we became parents ourselves.

Just about all of us had set assumptions about raising kids before we became parents ourselves. Some of these ideas might have been based on our own ideas of how we would absolutely do things differently than everyone else. Others, we believed what everyone else told us would happen would apply to our littles, too. But, that's not always the case, mama.

Below are six of the biggest lies I believed before having kids—and the reality of what actually happened for me.

1. Put your baby down drowsy, but awake

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