Wednesday, March 27, 2013

The Ultimate in Just No

There's Kate on her back porch.
Y'all, as soon as my sister-in-law Kate sent me this story, I asked if I could share it with you guys because oh my Lord, people just be acting all crazy. It's the first post on her blog in like three years, but we need to convince her to revive and renew her blog now that she's living out on the forty acres next to the haunted church, with some kind of redneck Sasquatch probably roaming her property. I know I would enjoy reading a mommy blog from this milieu. I still think about this four year-old essay she wrote on lipstick at least once a week.

Anyway, Kate is a licensed mental health counselor and is growing shiitake mushrooms on a log. You want her on your team. 

Without further ado, her tale:

This week I've had a flurry of mommy dates.  And there is one thing I've learned: just because we are moms, it does not mean that we should be friends. This is a rookie lesson, I'm sure.  But, man, I'm learning it the hard way. It's strange. This new mommy socializing world. It really feels like dating. Sort of. Anyway.

Take today, for instance. I drove thirty minutes to meet a mom and her two kids at a Cracker Barrel for breakfast this morning. Note: breakfast. As in, both G and I had on clothes and our hair was brushed by 8AM. This is sacrificial in my world. I do not do anything quickly in the morning. But, she had initiated this date a few weeks ago and I wanted to get to know her.  

I was running a few minutes late and so I texted her to let her know I'd be there shortly. I got there before her and waited a little while. Well, G is at the age that if I put him down in a Cracker Barrel we would end up having to buy a couple of throw pillows and some glass frog figurine because he would destroy it all. So, since I couldn't stand around holding him for long, I got a table. After we were seated, I texted to let her know where our table was.  After about fifteen minutes, she still hadn't responded to either text, so I decided to go ahead and order. I mean, after twenty minutes into a restaurant excursion with a toddler and there is no food on the way, you start getting strategic. Another fifteen minutes went by and I rechecked my texts to confirm the location/time. You know how you do. I even sent another text to let her know that we were ordering (she's a texter, by the way). And, of course, I called my husband to announce that I'm pretty sure I was being stood up for the first time. 

Well, our food came and we ate and it was a good forty five minutes after she was suppose to meet me, so I started to get a little worried. One more text of "Is everything ok?" and she immediately calls me. And, I kid you not, she starts with "Ohhhhh, hey!" and then proceeds to go into a long explanation of how she had both of her children dressed and ready to go and then she got distracted filing papers. Filing papers. And then she actually DESCRIBED to me the papers that she was filing and why they needed to be filed. And, btw, she doesn't work outside the home, so the paper was, like, her mail. I was all HUH? What? OK.

Then, THEN, she goes "Well, what are you doing later today?" And, I'm all "Oh, Yes! Let's totally get together.  I really want to spend more of my time on you today!!!" No, I was not. Instead, I tried to get off the phone as quickly as possible (I had reached the point of letting G play with the creamers on the table). And then she says "Awww, but I was really looking forward to hanging out with you!" And I'm sure there was an apology in there somewhere. But my eyes had gone crossed and I was done with the conversation.

I mean, for real ya'll. I told my mom there are many more excuses that she could have given me that would have given our friendship a chance. But there is something about the filing of the papers--even though your kids were dressed and ready?!--that let me know that we just won't be friends. You know? And, let me add, she better be glad that G is content to sit and eat.  Because I know some other mommas who would have taken their earrings off. You don't make a momma with a toddler wait on you.

No indeed you do not. Thank you for bringing us this tale, Kate. My eloquent response to this was, "omg rude."  But I think there must be something wrong with that woman. And I totally agree, that non-excuse would let me know that I could never count on her for another thing, ever again. What form of craziness IS that?

I mean, do whut?


Star said...

Yup, cross that woman off your "Reliable" list. After pulling that lame excuse out of her filing cabinet, she'll be lucky if she gets onto the "Happy to see you, if I happen to bump into you" list.

M said...

Those who inhabit their own private universe generally have a stunning disregard for the rest of humanity. That this would happen to your obviously kindhearted SIL is horrible. That this episode took place in the universal space of goodwill known as Cracker Barrel is unconscionable.

Your SIL should return to Cracker Barrel with toddler in tow for a fun, festive, and fabulous time with real friends and/or family (Becky, that's your cue), thereby erasing the specter of this loutish mom/non-friend.

Amy said...

That's a good point: such things should never happen in a Cracker Barrel! The very thought!!

Yeah, totally rude and bizarre behavior. It makes me wonder about this lady...cause that's way more than your garden variety cluelessness. I love Katie's description of this! The "taking the earrings off" line made me laugh.

Amy said...

Kate, I have two things to say. A) Please blog for us all! B) Mommy dating is even harder than man dating. Because just wait, soon you will meet a mom with whom you are totally compatible, and the sun will shine down gloriously for a time, and then? You will discover that your kids are NOT A MATCH and in fact they somehow manage to bring out the worst in each other despite having two fabulous mothers with fine parenting skills. (Or you might decide that maybe her parenting skills aren't so fabulous as all that, given how poorly her kid is treating yours.) Tensions will build, texts will take on a brusque tone, and there's no pretty ending.

Either way, it's worse than finding out that that great new guy has a little online fantasy gaming habit. Sigh.

Truly, it's hard! Good luck. Be glad you made it out without owning a (broken) glass frog, or investing any more time in She Who Must File.

Kate said...

Yes, we need more blogs from her. Mommy dating is hard, especially when children are involved. I had a dinner date with a friend and her two kids, and mine were very much looking forward to it. We are on our way to dinner and she texts me to say, "my kids are done." What??? Apparently they didn't feel like keeping the rendezvous vous, so they didn't. They didn't feel like meeting us. I was furious because my kids' feelings were hurt.

Christian said...

Isn't it nice when new friends pull these stunts on the first "date"?

Anonymous said...

As with real dating, I kept it at a hookup-level: if you were at library storytime, I'd learn yr name; if you were at the playground I'd wave & if you sat on my bench I might chat. I might be just as likely to studiously ignore you while I did the crossword bc it might be my only quiet time for the day. I had a brand-new baby & a boy who wasn't 2, so I had a lot of primal tunnel vision happening to meet my goals & I for sure didn't have time for the diversion of clueless people. I dunno. I made one excellent girlfriend who remains in the crucible of that two-baby time & I'm happy.

That's too bad that woman was so rude to Kate. She seems like a nice person to know. I think a lot of how you talked about her telling you abt touching people with both hands. I am a two-handed clasper, everywhere, & I thought it was so sweetly PJ-party of her to articulate that.

Veronica said...

That is just crazy. Yeah, no plans need be made with that lady ever again.

I remember when my son was first born, I met this lady that I liked in a mama-and-newborn yoga class, and the nervous embarrassment of "should I ask her for her number? Does she like me? Would she want to hang out with me?" was even worse than dating.

Becky said...

Ha! You know, it doesn't really get much easier as the kids get older. Everybody's so busy, it's like, "would she want to make time for me? Can I ask her to?"

Justine said...

Great story! This reminds me of so many mommy dates I have been on. Kate sounds like she's quick on the uptake, and I agree with her completely that there must be more to unify two people than the fact that we both procreated. I also agree with Elle about hooking up with other moms. I'd invite a mom who was standing there next to me to go have coffee but not arrange a date ahead of time. Too much pressure! But this is easier to pull off once kids are in preschool.

Elizabeth said...

I'm almost never a devil's advocate, as I find that role highly irritating when people take it with me, BUT I'm wondering whether she had a huge fight with her husband which was then followed by make-up sex with her husband while said children, "all dressed and ready to go" were watching some morning shows?

Otherwise, the woman sounds insane.

Becky said...

I really like where your head is at, E.