It’s not just my relationship with my husband that’s about to change. Republished from Whimn.com.au.
Lauren knows too much about me not to be my best mate. She was there by my side when we handed in notes to our PE teacher saying we couldn’t play sport because we had our period (I guffaw at that now). She was also there when I threw up multiple Midori pineapples through my fingers at a uni nightclub. She spoke beautifully at my wedding about friends being cheerleaders that my mascara didn’t stand a chance. And, when I got offered my dream job as editor of whimn.com.au she was thrilled for me. She’s my go-to girl as much today and when we met 20 years ago.
So, a few months out from finding myself on maternity leave after a decade of employment and my daily contact with human beings going from an entire office of people to just you and my baby, my internal panic button started beeping. Like a fire alarm running out of battery that you can’t be bothered to replace.
Not just for my career, but my relationships. Lauren, who’s always been on my wavelength, will become one of my non-mum friends and the setting of our friendship will likely change dramatically – becoming couch-based, with cups of tea, or on a park bench within a children’s playing area.
So to mark the life stage change, I invited her on a bestiemoon – a friend’s version of a babymoon, but ditching my partner for my mate. Here’s the formula you need for your own to show your main girl how much you love and value her.
A set of wheels
If you’re anything like me, proximity is key and you don’t want to be dealing with airports. Also, I used our bestiemoon as a chance to trial a new luxury for less mum wagon I had my eye on. I’ve been driving round in a 2008 Toyota Corolla Seca for years now, but given the incoming capsule and pram combo, it’s set to feel mighty small. We took the Holden Equinox on a trip to Lilianfels in the Blue Mountains, the car brand’s newest medium-size SUV, aka ‘mum size’.
The 2L turbo meant I could zip between bathroom stops and its safety highlights showed me all the things I’m doing wrong. The seat actually vibrates to alert you to things like speeding, lane departure, blind spots, and closeness to other vehicles. Plus, the Holden MyLink infotainment system features Apple CarPlay – fancy speak for maps, voice recognition for music, and the fact that Siri can not only make calls for you but send texts when you dictate, which was perfect for letting my mate know I was running 15 minutes late to pick her up without the temptation of texting.
I’m acutely aware our days of spontaneous visits and hours upon hours of quality time will soon be a thing of the past. Instead, as friends we’ll need to adhere to my new baby’s schedule, however irritating it may be. Yep, our post-childbirth friendship is going to require a lot of text exchanges in order to find a visiting time that works for everyone’s schedule.
So, on our weekend away in Katoomba, we chose not to have a schedule – instead, seeing where the weather and our moods took us. This meant doing the Echo Point to Scenic World via the Giant Stairway walk – about two hours of huffing and puffing. We also went swimming in the indoor pool and sat and read uninterrupted, side by side in robes on our double beds. Bliss.
There’s no turning point in a woman’s life quite like motherhood. While being a new mum doesn’t entirely preclude seeing the inside of a spa, I’ll have to cram a quick appointment into whatever free corner of my schedule I can find. For this reason, Lauren and I indulged in a two hour, yes 120-minute spa package, treating ourselves to a facial and massage combo, that left us feeling kneaded, buffed, polished and de-tensed all in the name of self-care.
A deliciously slow restaurant meal
Given I’ll soon be eating almost entirely at home, likely with one hand and in breast milk soaked PJs, a multi-course degustation is true luxury. Kick back with your best friend for a two-hour brunch after sleeping in on a Saturday morning, or go all-out like we did at Darley’s Restaurant with an extravagant five-course dinner set in the sweetest old cottage with open fireplaces.
Time to reflect
Motherhood won’t suddenly turn me into a boring zombie or an asshole with no sense of humor, but it will change me. We found ourselves taking a trip down memory lane before chatter definitely involved talk of baby milestones.
As I see it, it’s less a mourning and more a celebration of our new life stage as mates. I know Lauren is genuinely interested in our new addition. She’ll be become an “aunt” and feel more like family than friends. Just when I thought we’d covered every parenting topic, we spent hours more – traversing the big issues like cracked nipples to nudity, pain relief to breastfeeding. Yes, my 48-hour bestiemoon left me feeling heard, loved, supported and whole – and I hope Lauren the same.
Featured image via unsplash.com.
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