Tuesday, July 20, 2010

SAHM seeks PCD (Play Date Companion)

(This is a revised version of post I wrote in May but with the summer months here and play dates in full swing. I was hoping it would spark some comments.)

I feel like I am sneaking in a post as type quickly, hurrying to get my thoughts out before they are abruptly interrupted with a scream or a cry.

I'm on a race with the clock.

It is 7:30 in the morning and surprisingly enough, all the kids, including the baby, are fast asleep. You could hear a pin drop and I can actually finish a thought. As you know, a quiet house can't be taken for granted or ignored, it's usually the calm before the storm.

It's almost the end of July and I can't believe my son has already complete his first year in elementary school. Next year he will be a big Kindergartner, attending school all day. With summer in full swing and the long list of possible activities to embark upon, begins a line up of play dates with old friends and new and what I like to call, the "Play Date Dating Game".

I have had my luck with "mom" friends, but getting a new PCD (play date companion) for you and your kids can be nerve wrecking. And I often feel like a contestant in a "Speed Dating" event. Within a matter of seconds of seeing a new mom and her child,the sizing up beings and if you're not a match, they quickly move on.
But what are you supposed to expect? Friendship or just someone to go on play dates with?

It's nice to get a play date where not only your kids are having fun but you do too. We don't have to be best friends, but having someone with similar interests, that you can relate to and carry on a conversation with is a big plus. For the most part, the kids always get along, but a bad play date between moms can often feel like a bad date, forced and complicated, with uneasy breaks in conversation and uncomfortable silences because when it comes down to it, it's not just about the kids, it's about the moms too. Much like a date, it's especially about the approach, who is going to be the first to bring up the play date discussion, similar to first date jitters, you really have to step out on a limb, be the first to make a move and set yourself and your kids up for rejection. And after the exchange of phone numbers, and first call, it often feels like the luck of the draw, you never know what you are going to get.

And I'm afraid of rejection.

What if I'm just not that mother's cup of tea? After all, I'm not just the plain blend, neither are my children.

We come with a little sweetness and spice, shall we say an exotic blend, and we are much like the traveling side show act. At any time, my son can scream in laughter or cry that he is too hot, my daughter can talk off another mother's ear with repeated questions about the contents of her refrigerator or why she choose that color carpet, and my son can puke on said carpet then crawl over and try to eat your door stop.

Maybe we just have to take play dates for what they're worth, great experiences for my children to develop and grow socially. I'll jump at any chance not to have to entertain the kids and get in a little adult conversation.

And if a new mom friend comes along with it , I'll just take it as an added bonus.

Maybe I should take out an ad:

SAHM seeking PCD

Energetic, outgoing, friendly, married, suburban,
African American Stay-At-Home Mother of 3 beautiful, crazy and chaotic 
interracial children seeks another mother for play dates and possible friendship.
Ethnic background not important.
Must be outgoing, flexible and spontaneous, able to experience
new things with toddler in tow. Be willing to share
motherhood experiences similar but not limited to potty
training, temper tantrums, and sibling rivalry.
Friendship not necessary, but is a welcomed
bonus. Weekly play dates preferred but
not necessary and can be rescheduled and canceled
due to necessary parenting, family mishaps, not limited to
weather, sickness, flat tires, temper tantrums, or just plain
old mommy tiredness. Most important just be willing to
have a great time, leaving the
competitive, petty BS at home.

Join me on Thursday: Play date etiquette for moms.


  1. That is a GREAT ad. They really should have an online community to make the screening process easier. Playdate Matchmaker. :-)

    On another note, I love the quiet stillness of mornings. My fiance and I have the kids this month. It's usually only 20mins, but ahhhhh - bliss!

  2. OMG, Danielle, I just spilled my heart out in a 20-minute comment, and some error occurred and I lost the entire thing. I hate it when that happens. I feel for your plight. My kids are both homebodies and they have a couple of cousins their age nearby, so scheduling playdates and the like has never been a real priority for us. Sometimes even attending birthday parties for their preschool classmates and kids of family friends was stressful let alone trying to get them to mingle with strangers. Sorry I don't have much to offer in the way of help with this one. One little tip I can offer is choose a public place for the first meeting-storytime at the library/bookstore. That way nobody's home is destroyed by newcomers, and there is a definite end in sight if the playdate isn't going like you expected. -EW

  3. Hi Danielle! Sorry, just now getting around to FF.

    Ohmygoodness, this was funny. Your kids and my kids sound like they have very similar personalities. LOL at the eating door stops. I've had to take the rubber ends off of all of ours. ALL of them... and, of course, all our walls behind the doors now have indentations left from the doorknobs hitting the wall. But, it was either that or have the baby choke on those stupid things. He just would NOT leave them alone.

    Hope you're having a great week! :)

  4. I find that playdates get harder now that my daughter is getting older and her friends have two or more siblings. We don't quite fit in the new mommy category any more and people get very busy with all their children and school and after school activities. I think it is easier to find friends when moms are starting out as moms together. As the children enter school, then playdates become more of a drop off. I guess the best thing to do is join a moms group. Look up MOMs Club and see if there is a group around you. This is a way to make great mom friends, because these moms want the same thing as you, playdates and friendships!

    Mama Hen

  5. No help here...as a working mom, I'm excluded from all the mommy groups! Even when my kids want playdates, we aren't invited even if it's a day off...so I can say, if you meet a mom that works give her a chance too!


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