This week I accidently upgraded a fairly new friend in the friendship scale. I don’t think she was ready for it. We’ve only properly been friends for a few months. We’ve known each other to say hello for a while, and we’d only recently moved from “polite chat friend” to “coffee friend”. Things had accelerated quickly, I knew we had something special when it was clear it would be perfectly acceptable to go round to her house for some ciders on a Saturday night when her husband was out, in my pyjamas. She was my kind of girl. I just hope I haven’t scared her off.
The scale of friendship after you have children is very different to the way you are with your friends pre-childbirth. Before children (Lets call it BC) your best mates were the ones who held your hair back in the toilets while you vomited. They stopped you snogging ugly boys in O’Neills (…..just me?), but they helped you to convince them to furnish you with drinks anyway. They weren’t disgusted when you told them the story of the horrendously hungover train journey to work after a big night out, that involved finding last nights Cornish pasty in your handbag…..and eating it. They laughed, and they loved you. Your best friend was the one you called at 2am to ask for help to get you home.
After delivery of the children (lets call it AD) you define your best friends differently. Now your best friend is the one who you call at 2am to emergency babysit your youngest child because you need to take the oldest to hospital. They cried with you when you knocked over the 20mls of breastmilk that it took you 40 minutes to express. You compare stains on your clothing with each other (FYI, snot stain trumps baked bean handprint). The vomit discussed in your Saturday night chats, is no longer your own, and it certainly didn’t occur in a nightclub toilet.
So anyway, back to my lovely friend. I was off for a run (I know, I am as surprised as you) my stomach was churning. I’d run past my mums house but she wasn’t in. I was getting seriously frightened I was going to do a Paula Radcliffe and find myself squatting over a drain. I live in a lovely village, I know a few people on my run route. I was just getting to my lovely recently upgraded pyjama friend’s house. It was like seeing an oasis in the desert. I knocked on the door. I told her that I was really sorry to drop in unannounced but I really needed an emergency poo. I felt so bad. I became poo-shy. The terrible diarrohea feeling subsided as suddenly as it had arrived. I sheepishly left the toilet to the sound of her husband pissing himself laughing, and threatening to post my unexpected visit on facebook.
I felt ashamed. I had not massacred her toilet, but I had potentially massacred our friendship. We were pyjama friends. We were happy with that, but I had upgraded it to poo-friends. This should be a natural progression. There are only a few friends whose toilets I am happy to defecate in. It is one of the upper echelons of friendship. I always feel a little bit flattered when someone feels at home enough in my house to do a poo. Its a compliment of sorts.
So there we have it. The Friendship scale. FYI it goes like this:
- Polite Conversation Friend – You make polite conversation at school or nursery pick up. You might not know each others names and you have to call each other “Poppy’s mummy” or similar in front of the children.
- Coffee Friend (This can also be Toddler Group friend) You are now on first name terms. You might share a cup of tea at a toddler group.
- Playdate Friend – You have frequented each others houses. The kids play together. You have probably moaned about your husband/partner to them.
- Drunk Friend – The drinking may be at someones house because you cant get a babysitter. That’s fine. It still counts. You still bonded as you talked shit about something without the children interrupting.
- Pyjama Friend – It is a beautiful thing to just hang out together in your PJ’s. Essentially it is drunk friend, but in pyjamas.
- Poo Friend. You can fearlessly poo at their house. It is perfectly acceptable to come downstairs and declare that “they might want to give it 5 minutes” no-one will judge you.
And to my lovely friend, who absolutely knows who she is. I proper love you. Sorry about the nearly-poo. xx