Mom friends are the best, right?

Wanting your children to sleep and then missing them an hour later? Wondering if your toddler will starve because he refuses to eat anything but olives and cheddar crackers? Commiserating over how perfectly wrecked your body is after growing, delivering, and nursing a little human, and how you don’t regret a single minute? No one else understands like another mom.

Here are the five friends every mom needs in her posse:

Kindred sprit

The kindred spirit mom is awesome for day-to-day hanging out and for those much-needed pep talks about staying the course with the hard choices of parenting. It’s nice to be able to commiserate with someone who you know won’t try to convince you to try a new tactic. A good bit of parenting is just keeping your head down and getting through the hard times with grace and humility.

Opposite mom

The beauty of the mom who is your total opposite (like my formula-feeding, corporate-working, crib-training friend) is that she reminds you that — no matter what — everyone’s baby who is loved and cared for will be totally fine. The choices and priorities we set as an individual family matter to us, but they don’t diminish the choices of others if it works for them and their families. Also, it’s nice to swap stories and realize that no matter how you raise your children, they all throw tantrums, go on hunger strikes, and wake up at all hours of the night.

Disciplined mom

The disciplined mom is the one I turn to whenever I feel run down or uninspired. Disciplined moms don’t do it all (no one does), but they do manage to keep the house running with their brood healthy and safe, all while performing crazy acts like daily exercise and mopping. I will probably never be a totally disciplined mom, but whenever I’m feeling blah I remind myself of the tactics of my disciplined friends, like at-home workouts during naps or turning housework into a fun family game.

Fun mom

Fun moms are the best friends because you can just ride their coattails without having to plan the fun yourself. Their kids have awesome themed birthday parties that your children love. They call you up and ask you to go to the beach or the farm with them (and they’ve already planned snacks and looked up directions!). They make play dough and invite your kids over. All you have to do is provide is some eager children and maybe pitch in a snack.

Not a mom

Every mom should have at least one good friend who is not a mom (and maybe even wild and free and single!). They tell awesome stories, their schedules are way flexible for going out (maybe even after bedtime!), and they always help me to feel very grateful for my husband and son and my “boring” mom life at the end of the day.