26 Feb How Being Part Of A Mums’ Group Changed Everything
When this letter dropped into our CHILD inbox, we just had to share it. For a huge number of mums, the feeling of loneliness after they’ve have their baby can be quite overwhelming. Melanie reached out to us with a tip for anyone with a newborn, about how opening up to a mums’ group ended up meaning more to her than she could have ever imagined.
I am not sure whether this is a story or just a sweet part of my story but I felt the need to share it. Last weekend twelve one-year-olds and their parents celebrated in a little park in Sandringham in Sydney’s south. It was a birthday cake smash which we had been planning for some time. But that’s not really the story.
The story for me started early in 2017 when I made friends with a group of women at the local early childhood centre. We were thrown together by chance; and we had all just given birth. And what a difference it has made to the motherhood experience.
I wasn’t part of a mothers’ group with my first two children who are much older. There were no smartphones and chat apps like WhatsApp back then. It was a lonely and isolated time, peppered with the occasional chat with another mum, a total stranger at a park for 15 minutes while chasing my child about. Hardly a chance at anything meaningful.
This time around I was linked to an early childhood centre as I was farewelled from hospital. It was there our group met. We then began attending local playgroups, rhyme time at the local library and we created a mums’ and bubs’ pilates group too.
We informally caught up at parks and for coffee and shared the highs and lows of motherhood, and swapped tips and advice. In the early weeks, it was so nice to have someone else to chat to in the wee small hours, even if just to feel you weren’t alone.
Each of us was coming into this journey from a different place and yet despite differences in age, cultural and socioeconomic backgrounds, the similarities that we shared as mums came into focus and the rest is history.
A friendship has been forged and we are bonded by lots of coffee, nappies, laughter, and tears.
If there is any advice I’d give to a pregnant friend, it would be to join a mothers’ group through your early childhood centre. It provides a stable backdrop to all the difficult ensuing weeks and months, a platform to share insights and a sounding board for all your hopes and fears.
Fast forward one year and I realise I couldn’t have done it without these women, and it’s nice to see our little ones starting to play and share too (well we are working on that!).
Images by Life Is Now Photography