Newbie guide: There are a number of baby websites that seem to be a portal for new and expecting mums eg babycentre and what-to-expect-when-you’re-expecting where you kind of search and trawl until you find very new mums all looking for a “group” – eg Mums Due Jun18 Australia or similar…then you post your e-mail address into the chat, they send you a friend request/or just invite you – usually on FB and before you know it you’re in!
Join more than one group if you like…when they first start off they are a bit crazy. Remember there are a LOT of hormonal women in that group – tensions are going to run high, there will be sadness and drama, disagreements and admin laying down the rules – sub groups will be made “for the cool/crazy/crunchy mums” but slowly as the months progress…the numbers dwindle and every now and then there will be a “roll call” to cull the numbers down to just active members…now you’re getting to the best part, so hang in there.
So if you can scroll past the drama – be positive and supportive where you can, the group really can form into a close knit bunch of lovely women that for the most part are super friendly and can support you when things feel awfully tough.
I remember logging into FB at 3am whilst feeding the eldest Royal…I was so sooooo tired coz we were having a “leap” and feeding often and sleeping crap was just how it was, so I logged in and asked if anyone else was up feeding – just looking for a friendly hello and a bit of idle chatter. There were about 5 of us awake, feeding babes…making bottles, rocking cots n singing, all trying our best to get our little ones back to sleep. And at that moment – I was so absolutely grateful for these other mums! Who else would possibly want to hear from me at 3am, to keep me company silently whilst I fed my baby, who understood about sore nips and trapped wind, leaking nappies and projectile vomit…they did, they were and still are an incredible support all these years later!
I have been absolutely blessed to form close friendships with some of these mums too, and a few years ago I posted in the group that I would be flying across to visit family in another state – and asked if any of the local mums wanted to catch up! To my surprise and delight quite a few mums said yes, and over the years I’ve got to meet quite a few of them…and I try to catch-up with them each time I’m over there! We still chat regularly – sometimes multiple times a day, sometimes only once or twice a week…we all understand that we’re busy, we’ve each gone on to have more kids and have supported and held each other’s hand through many tough times over the years – but these friendships are unique. There is an unwritten understanding between us all, absolutely no judgement, lots of love, plenty of laughs and we are there for each other as much as we possibly can be…through the fun times and the tough ones too!
So I truly hope you can find your tribe / find your village…be it online, from local mums in your community, FB groups or local mum and bub catch-ups a friend of a friend told you about…just have a go, even if you only get it half right – it’s better than not trying at all!