A couple months into my pregnancy, I joined a meetup group called Austin Pregnancy & New Moms Group. Whie I'm not necessarily one to join random groups of strangers, it occurred to me that I had no friends that were married, let alone expecting a baby, and Baby B was going to have a very slow social start if I didn't do something to rectify the situation. Not to mention, I've worked with many infants and been stranded basically at home with them, and IT. IS. CRAZY-MAKING. Every new mom needs to know some other new moms to vent to, even if they give birth to an angel. It's just a fact of life.
Anyhow, today was the first meetup that this group has had that I've been able to attend, and I had a (surprisingly) good time. I say surprisingly not because I'm a major snob that doesn't enjoy meeting new people, but because the stereotypical moms group doesn't appeal to young, hip, twenty-five-year-old me. To me, a 'moms group' should be a covert term for an organization that really enjoys happy hours, and just needed a convenient excuse to get together. While sadly, we didn't meet at a bar (half of us are pregnant-to-very-pregnant, rather than new moms), I did have a great time.
First off, there wasn't any judgmental glances being thrown my way, which is more than I can say for any regular ol' trip to Babies R Us. Not a single person seemed to mind that I was young and/or unmarried, and I really, really enjoy and respect a group that keeps an open mind. Score one for me. Second, I met three other moms that are due around my same time frame (one a few days before, one the same day, and one a week later). And we're ALL having girls! Suh-weeeeet! Looks like Baby B might have a shot in hell at having a playdate with someone other than her gay uncles. Score another for me (and Baby B). It was also GREAT hearing perspectives of new mothers, who had babies attached to them (by sling, not breast, thank God) ranging from 4 weeks to 4 months. And rather than being a whine-fest, which so many of these type of things easily turn into, it was a very productive and yet informal forum to vent about husbands, colicky babies, breastfeeding, etc. What can be more helpful than that? I'd like to think that I know it all, having 'raised' many other peoples babies, but at the end of the day, I always got to go home. And I know that when the time comes when we finally get to bring her home, it will be one HELL of an adjustment. Why not have support?
I am SO glad that I went this morning, and happy to have met some wonderful ladies that I hope will turn into wonderful friends of both mine and Baby B's. Here's to getting out there, despite your reservations, and taking a proactive and productive start to parenthood :)
(Note: For anyone interested in this sort of thing, visit www.meetup.com to search for a local meetup group in your area.)