Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Creating a Mom Community

The worse part of being a stay-at-home mom for me, is feeling lonely.  In truth, I’m not exactly alone, but preschool-level conversations don’t generally count as challenging and thought-provoking in my book.  It’s cute but a little monotonous.

Toddler: Mom!  Mommy!  Mom!  Juice!  Juice! Mommy!
Me: Oh, you want juice? Say, ‘Juice, please.’
T: Juice peas, Mommy.
M: Okay, Mommy will get you some more juice…Say, ‘Thank you.’
T: Tank you.

After repeating these interactions a few times daily, as well as, topics concerning diapers, trucks, and Mickey Mouse, I feel a strong need to express my thoughts on subjects other than re-filling sippy cups. Otherwise, I get a little stir-crazy and too self-analytical.

Being around other moms is not only fun, but life-giving as well. Nobody, but another mom who has been in your sneakers, could quite understand the feelings and struggles you go through in your every day.  Having real, honest friendships with a common goal encourages me to push through the tunnels of doubt and frustration and lead me to the lighter side of parenthood.

When I look back, I don't think any friendships have just happened for me.  Each meeting at the playground or in a school hallway required bravery and an urgency to seek out a connection.  Knowing how fulfilling it is to have a team of moms surrounding me, makes every attempt worth the awkwardness and risk of not being liked.
Looking for your own mom community?  
·         Strike up a conversation at the neighborhood playground or pool
·      Accept an invitation to an existing playgroup
·      Set up your own play dates with new friends
·      Join a church small group of couples with children
·      Find a mom's group, like Birds on a Wire

It’s important to create a community that encourages you along the journey of motherhood.  It reminds you that you’re never alone.