Ahh, the Mama Tribe (otherwise known as my Mama Lifeline).
I met the first members of my Mama Tribe when my baby girl was 8 weeks old. We had all signed up for a New Mother’s group at a local breastfeeding store. I was terrified that first day, and it turns out they were, too. We quickly got acquainted and spent the next 2 months sharing the nitty gritty, intimate details of motherhood. There was a whole lot of understanding and crying and comforting that took place in that small room.
Let’s face it: making friends as an adult woman is a challenge and can be as awkward and uncomfortable as dating. It was so much easier in high school and college. Same place, same time, same circumstances. But as an adult, all of that changes. Friends scatter. Some work. Some move states. Some get married.
Being a new mama was one of the loneliest times of my life. I needed to find my tribe.
And I am so grateful I did.
From meeting the incredible mamas in that class when Harper was an infant, to connecting with more wonderful moms in our neighborhood, to joining a Due Date group on Facebook. These women are my Mama Lifeline.
We are in it together. You know my struggles and I understand yours because I’ve been there. Same place. Same time. Same circumstances.
So if you’re just venturing into this whole season of your life, I encourage you to find your tribe. Go to that mama + baby class. Smile and say hello to the tired mom at the coffee shop. Reach out. Those mamas will be the light at the end of the tunnel.
HERE ARE 5 REASONS FINDING A MAMA TRIBE IS ABSOLUTELY ESSENTIAL:
1. HUMOR. It’s tempting to take this whole motherhood thing so seriously. After all, it’s my job not only to keep this little girl alive, but to ensure she thrives. Talk about pressure. Enter: a text from a mama with a well-timed joke about Justin Bieber, and I’m busy belly laughing while my girl runs around the house naked and pees on my new boots. Take that, Motherhood.
2. NEW IDEAS. Brainstorming sessions with my tribe happen daily. What started as conversations about nursing, SIDS, teething and sleeping when our babes were infants have turned into discussions about temper tantrums, picky eating, teething and sleeping (oh, some things never change) now that our babies are toddling. And perhaps most importantly, they save me from spending 97% of my day on Google. (Now it only takes up 48% of my time.)
3. CONNECTION. Once we’ve shared specific details of our birth stories and woes of our post-baby bodies, I start feeling pretty damn connected to these mamas. It’s safe to say I’ve shared some things that would even make my husband blush.
4. PERSPECTIVE. It’s easy to lose perspective when I’m drowning in the daily struggles of this gig. That’s where my Been There, Done That Mamas come in with a much needed reminder of: “Don’t worry, it’s just a phase” and I’m transported to a time when my baby girl is all grown up and doesn’t need me as much anymore. Nothing makes me savor the little things quite like that.
5. SUPPORT. Motherhood has been by far the hardest journey I’ve ventured. Yes, it’s all worth it, but there’s no way around it: this stuff is HARD. Without these incredible women, I would be lost in the fray and completely dizzy. They provide me direction, and on the days I feel weak, they lend me their ears and give me a hug and tell me I can do it.
And that is invaluable.