I am lightly involved in a Facebook group for moms. And when I say “lightly,” I mean that I probably bring it up in conversation almost daily, but don’t often participate in most posts. Well, one day almost a year ago I did post, and the answer changed my mom game. Seriously, I don’t know where I would be had I not come to these thousands of Facebook women and asked, “How do you find mom friends?”
One of these fellow mamas gave me the answer: MOPS.
Now, I thought, well, that’s not for me because I don’t have a preschooler, knowing that MOPS stands for Mothers of Preschoolers. But that’s the tricky part. It’s not just for mamas who have a kid in preschool. This wonderful, life giving group is for any mom with a child that is not in school yet! Game changer.
After a quick search I found out there was a MOPS group in my small town. I had assumed I would have to commute to a larger town about twenty minutes away, but these groups are popping up all over the place. It is a beautiful thing.
That same day I decided to ask to join their Facebook group and get a feel for this whole deal. It seemed pretty alright, so the next really big step was to actually go to a meeting. But how scary is that? Walking alone into to a gathering of a bunch of women you don’t know. It’s nerve racking, for sure. I was super nervous, but I took the plunge, and I am glad I did.
That first week I left feeling so refreshed. I can barely even articulate just how good I felt. After months of staying home with a baby and moving to a new town where I didn’t know anyone, I got two glorious hours to just be me. Not a mom. Not a wife. Not a dishwasher, diaper changer, floor sweeper, sous chef, or any of my other loved titles. I was just me.
I really could not believe how good it felt. Just having a hot breakfast with other women that understood me was amazing. Plus, no one follows you into the bathroom or asks you to wipe any part of their body.
That first week we ate breakfast, did a few giveaways (one of which I won!), and discussed how we can better serve special needs moms. Pretty simple, but so wonderful.
In the following weeks—I did not miss a single meeting—we created string art, had a spa day, listened to an informed speaker about postpartum depression, and a myriad of other activities. Each week I was greeted with a sincere smile, offered hot breakfast (with coffee!), and given two hours to just be me. It was spectacular.
I met a variety of women (including my across the street neighbor) who were all undeniably unique. We have a mom who has three kids, LOVES everything Disney, and enjoys hosting foreign exchange students. And we have another mom who has two kids, a half sleeve tattoo, fights MMA, and is going to start homeschooling this year. There is a mom friend for everyone!
I am so blessed to have found my MOPS group right when I needed it. Every other week truly is a breath of fresh air. I found a place to belong here in small town Nebraska, and if this computer nerd who loves her garden that is just starting her family and is wandering through this motherhood thing can find a place to connect, then there is hope for you!