A Mummy network can be a life line.
You may have seen last week on our More than a Mum FB page that I posted the status : Today’s Maths: 1 grumpy child with a cold + 1 tired Mummy = awful day… HOWEVER… 2 grumpy children with colds + 2 tired Mummies + 2 good lattes = enjoyable day. Loretta and I (both fighting colds) spent the day together at Battersea Children’s zoo with the kids and for both of us it made what could have been an awful day an awful lot better.
This set me reflecting on how lucky I am to have such a brilliant network of Mummy-friends in the area. People I can do mutual play-dates with, both with parents, (so that we can catch up) and without (so that one of us gets some time off). People I can ask to look after Munchkin for an hour or two at a moment’s notice if I need to go to the doctor or nip into work; People who I can moan too and share moments of excitement with; People who will talk about poo, wee and bad behaviour with me, but not judge me; People whose work and social lives are quite different to mine and yet who I have a bond with because we have shared and grown together through the most challenging and life changing moments of our lives.
I was at a wedding at the weekend and chatting with a couple who have three children. They are moving house from London, where they have been since they first had their children, to more rural area. The change of lifestyle is based on the ability to buy a larger house, the better school results and perceived benefits of rural versus big-city living. The husband of the couple is going to keep his current job, so for him the move will mean a different house and a different commute, but the same job and colleagues. The wife of the couple, however, is a stay at home Mum and she said that her biggest worry was being the ‘new Mum in the playground/toddler group’ and how she will survive without the friends that she has made over the 6 years since she was first pregnant.
It must be a pretty daunting task being the new-girl again, as it were. Also when I think of the bond I have with my Mummy-friends, I suppose many tight-knit groups can be pretty cliquey and potentially difficult to break into. In fact one of the things that we found on our More than a Mum courses was that many Mums, with children of all ages, were keen to meet people in a similar situation and did not necessarily have the kind of network which Loretta and I often take for granted.
I know we have written about it many times before, but I would just like again to thank the Mummy-friends who support me day-to-day. I would also like to urge us all (myself included) to be welcoming and friendly to any new Mums we might run into. We need each other’s support and on days when you’re at your wits-end just meeting someone who knows how you feel can be a life-line.