“Um, Maddie’s Mom?” she said awkwardly, “Would you care for a deviled egg?”

By Megan

It’s the reason I want Mama cards. Well, the main reason.

Has this ever happened to you?

Every week I take Bean to her little music and imagination class at the local rec department. And every week I sit outside the class, which is held in the rec center’s cafeteria, on this long bench, my purse on my lap, with the other Mamas and sometimes a baby sibling or two, and we all wait for our little sweetpeas to get finished with their class and come barreling out of the cafeteria, their faces all aglow with joy because they got to jump like bunnies and collect acorns and twigs like squirrels and LOOKY MAMA! They all got frog stamps on their hands! FROGGY STAMPS, MAMA! THIS HERE IS THE BEST THING THAT HAS EVER HAPPENED TO ME IN MY WHOLE LONG THREE POINT FIVE SEVEN FIVE YEARS OF LIFE. CAN YOU BELIEVE IT?

And while we’re sitting there for nearly an hour, because we are women, we “share.” I generally sit with the same two women each week. We’ve been sitting together every Monday, barring a few holiday weeks, since the beginning of this year. And I know pretty much everything there is to know about these two other Mamas. I know their girls’ names (Bean’s contemporaries in class), I know the names and ages of their other children. I know where they get their hair done, what they did this past weekend, what they like to eat for breakfast, what they feel most guilty about as parents, how they feel about delayed vaccination schedules, that their husbands are not “handy” around the house so they get their fathers to come do stuff on the sly, I know which of their kids was the toughest baby, which had the worst diaper rash and what they used to finally get it to go away.

I know where these women live, I know how much each of their kids weighed at birth, how long their labors were,  which one had an episiotomy and which just WISHED like heck they had. I know all about one lady’s C-sections and I know she doesn’t regret having them or wish she could have delivered them vah-jay-jay-nally. I know where all their kids go to school, how the kids and the moms like their teachers this year, where they shop for their clothes and how often they change their bed linens. I know of one mom’s on-going struggle with both of her children’s chronic constipation, and I have actually cheered, in person, as her baby boy struggled to relieve himself of said problem one morning while we were all bench-sitting together.

I know it all, people. We have BONDED on that bench, and I look forward to seeing these ladies every week. Isn’t it amazing and wonderful that God has made women to be so very relational, so willing to be vulnerable and open to one another in just about any setting? These two women and I — we’ve formed a weekly support group; become sharers of our collective wit and wisdom. Laughed, cried, laughed until we cried, and hugged our girls together at the end of every class while saying farewell to one another until the next Monday. I’m thankful for the advice and the companionship and the warmth and the laughs.

Inexplicably, I’m even thankful I know what color their master bathrooms are painted and how their husbands feel about those colors. (Not PLUM!?)

But there’s a teee-nincey problem.

An awkward, oh how could this have happened, what do I do NOW problem.

Y’all. We don’t know one another’s names!

Because up until now, it hasn’t really seemed that important, you know? Or maybe we’re too busy with all the SHARING to think of something so rote and mechanical as introducing ourselves. I know one of them as Maddy’s mom and the other is Kate’s mom and I’m Bean’s mom. And Maddy’s mom’s baby boy’s name is Drew, and Kate’s mom has a 7-year-old named Abbey. That’s been enough.

But now we’ve all decided to take the girls on a picnic at the park next week after class. And it occurs to me that we’ve become actual friend-like thingies, and there’s a chance we may actually want to get together after the girls’ class ends. I know I’d like to. And even if we didn’t, I know I’ll see (ugh, see how awkward this is?) “Maddy’s mom” next year when we take our girls to preschool – they’re in the same class. And then what’ll I say?

“Uh, hi ‘Maddy’s mom.’  How was your summer? Husband used to that olive green paint in the bathroom yet?”

So I’m gonna have to step on up next Monday and facilitate introductions among three women who’ve been having coffee and deep, ponderous conversation together once a week for nearly 4 months. And I can do it. At the right moment in the conversation, say, right after we wrap up a discussion about PMS or ill-fitting nursing bras, I’ll just say, “By the way, y’all, I’m Megan.”

But for the next time, because it doesn’t seem right to know so much about a person before being able to address her by name, I think I’ll get some Mommy cards, just in case.

Megan also blogs at FriedOkra.

9 Responses to “Um, Maddie’s Mom?” she said awkwardly, “Would you care for a deviled egg?”
  1. AmyG
    February 16, 2009 | 11:42 am

    I’ve been in a situation like that before. I ended up asking my daughter’s kindergarten teacher, the name of the other child’s Mom! lol

    Good luck with “introducing” yourself. Guess you could start off the next conversation with, “You know, I just realized, we didn’t properly introduce ourselves”. Let us know how it went!

  2. Becky
    February 16, 2009 | 11:46 am

    I think you should print this blog post and take it to the class, and then read it to them, in lieu of the awkwardness of actually breaking the introductory ice. That would be awesome.

  3. Audrey
    February 16, 2009 | 1:07 pm

    I smiled reading your post. I work out at a gym every day. I see the same people each and every day. I finally said to one person, “can I know your first name so that I can call you by name when we say hi?” It is very awkward. Perhaps what you can do instead of asking their names is to say “It occured to me that you may not know my name, I’m Megan” Hopefully they’ll both answer with their names. It’s so fun to get to “visit” the blogs from Bloggy Carnival now that I have time and can read and post.

  4. Beck
    February 16, 2009 | 1:11 pm

    Ha, yeah. I’m just so used to it that I now just calmly say that “can you even believe it? We’ve been talking so much and I’ve never managed to catch your name.” But mom cards would probably be MUCH better.

  5. Candace
    February 17, 2009 | 1:12 am

    I know how you feel. My son attends preschool and for the longest time we never knew each others names. Only by “so and so” mom. Funny and great post! We have since introduced each other and now I have to remember 7 other kids names plus parents!

  6. Kimberly
    February 17, 2009 | 2:02 am

    I am always the organizer of a list of emails. Then I have the info!

  7. Tonya
    February 17, 2009 | 11:22 am

    That is oh so true. I have been through many gymnastic sessions and talked and talked only to realize I didn’t know their names! But I’m usually like you and the one to introduce myself and then everyone else follows suit.

  8. Martha C
    February 22, 2009 | 5:49 pm

    I have been in this situation too many times to count!! I am very good with kids names but awful with adults! I’d just tell them I’m awful with names and reask mutiple times. Good luck! It sounds like a great group to hang out with.

  9. chine
    April 5, 2012 | 9:03 pm

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