We did it. We actually went to our neighborhood’s block party this year. We always promised ourselves that once we had kids, we would get out of the house on National Night Out, we would make small talk, we would endure the heat, we would (gasp!) introduce ourselves to the neighbors.
Six and a half years. That’s how long we’ve lived in this house. But we’re introverts, homebodies, both of us terrified of awkward meet-ups, so we just weren’t comfortable participating until we had a buffer. As in… a CHILD.
Yay for buffer children!
Of course everyone was SO NICE. We got a lot of, “You’ve lived here THAT long? How have we never met?” and “When did you have a baby?! I had no idea, you sure were quiet about it!” and “I saw you walking the other day with a stroller, and thought, they have a kid?”
So yeah, all in all, it was a very lovely night. I’m glad we went. Gus seriously hammed it up for all the strangers. It was going on 8:00 PM, definitely pushing his bedtime, and he started manic laughing at everything this one man did, you know that hyper, uncontrollable laugh that almost sounds like it could turn into a sob any moment? His whole face would get flushed, his mouth wide open resembling a muppet, and he just would not stop. He had us all in our own fits of laughter, his joy contagious. What a lovely buffer he is, I love him so much.
I met a mom that lives down the street whose youngest is only about 4 months older than Gus. And Emily across the street has a son less than 3 months older. And I have so much in common with both women, parenting style wise, that it is just ridiculous that I haven’t made more of an effort to meet people before now. Already, within 10 minutes of meeting each other, the mom down the street and I were talking about the fact that our babies are in NO WAY sleeping through the night, which turned to talk of co-sleeping and extended nursing. Hearing about how her first child was a champion sleeper, sleeping through the night, in her crib, from the time she was 8 weeks old, and that now she has this 16 month-old that is so far on the other spectrum… I don’t know why that was so comforting to me, but Lord knows it was. Immensely. Then 30 minutes later I find myself in a conversation with Emily about having breastfed babies that haven’t necessarily followed the pattern for weight gain illustrated by the standard growth charts doctors and, consequently, parents place waaaay too much importance on (in my opinion, more on this topic here if you’re interested). It’s all stuff that I have stressed about, all stuff that at some point over the last year I have felt really alone in, sometimes even shameful or embarrassed of, and goodness, there are two ladies within walking distance of my home that I might have turned to if only I would have gone a little outside my comfort zone earlier. I’m such a dunce. ;)
In other news, I have lost my camera, and it is eating me up inside. It had pictures from Lisa’s bachelorette party, pictures of Gus and the cake Dan made me for my birthday (so sweet!), and who knows what else. I am so sad, and still trying to hold out hope that I find it. The last time I remember using it was at the park last Friday morning, I’ve called the local city hall, twice, and the local police department. Nada. I feel like I live in the sort of town where if someone found something like that at a playground they would turn it in. I really truly believe that, so I am hoping that means it’s somewhere insane inside my house, and not somewhere like, the trash. I’m hoping that I put it “away” somewhere ridiculous, like in the laundry basket or in Dan’s softball bag, when I was cleaning last Saturday. Ugh. It’s not even about the camera, it’s a simple point and shoot, can be replaced for probably about $200. I’m torn up about the pictures on there. Ugh. I am so sorry Lisa, worst bridesmaid EVER.