Moms Group Recon Mission

I had preconceived notions of what moms groups are like, based on what I heard from a friend who brings her daughter to Isabella's library playgroup. When her daughter was first born, she went to a meeting of our town's moms group, and felt very uncomfortable. Apparently the group was for SAHMs only (they repeatedly asked her if she stayed home with her daughter and my friend felt pressured to show some sort of SAHM identification), and she received a distinct Desperate Housewives vibe throughout the meeting. She said the moms also seemed entirely immersed in every nuance of their children's lives, with no outside interests of their own.

Obviously, I needed to scrap my plans to attend a meeting of this group because to say that I would not fit in is putting it mildly.

So when another friend invited me to attend a different moms group, I was sceptical. However, a quick perusal of the moms group's website, a chapter of a national organization, put me at ease. This sentence, in particular, sealed the deal for me:

"We support all aspects of a mother's identity. It can be easy to forget with all of the errands and soccer practice and diapers that we are also the people we were before we became mothers. Sure She was a little different- (ok, lets face it- A LOT different) but She is still there. She is still a lawyer, an engineer, a graphic designer, a master Scrabble player, or a Yoga goddess. Now more than ever She needs some attention."

So last night, we attended our first meeting as visitors. And I was very happy to find the women honest and down-to-earth. Among others in attendance, there was an insurance actuary who works from home, a recent transplant from Boston and another from the UK, and a chief resident who specializes in family medicine at the hospital where I had Isabella, and who coincidentally has the same last name as my fertility doctor. Luckily I refrained from telling her, "Hey, your husband got me pregnant," long enough for her to inform me that she and he were not related.

The topic of this month's meeting was holiday traditions, and it was really interesting to hear about what other families do for the holidays. For example, the British woman described in detail how she makes the traditional Christmas pudding and Christmas cake. Did you know that both of these desserts are made two months in advance, and then stored in a closet or other cool and dark place until Christmas day? The mysterious and not-altogether-clear-to-me combination of boiling and feeding the pudding and cake brandy for two months produces an apparently delicious end result.

I really enjoyed this meeting. We talked about our kids, but the mentions were brief, and related to the topic of the meeting. It was great to be in the company of a mix of women where the discussions didn't center around teething and temper tantrums and nap schedules.

And best of all, unlike the library or the playgroups or the classes I attend with Isabella, I actually remember the names of the women who attended this meeting, instead of only their children's names, which is an unfortunate flaw I repeatedly demonstrate (Hi.... Zach's mom. How are you?).

Ugh.

I hope to go to another meeting, and then I may consider joining. I need all the adult interaction I can get.

8 Responses to “Moms Group Recon Mission”

  1. # Blogger Marie

    I'm glad we went. And I'm thinking of asking for membership for Christmas. Not that I couldn't just fork over the $, but people are always asking, and I never have ideas! I enjoyed meeting the women too, and I'm salivating at the thought of their e-mail loop and message boards (how sad is that!).  

  2. # Anonymous Melissa Garrett

    Glad you had such a great experience! Years ago, I contacted Moms of Ithaca to schedule a visit. They gave me the time and location of their next meeting, and NO ONE showed. When I emailed the head honcho about it, she didn't even offer an apology or explanation. THAT sealed the deal for me.

    Funny thing is, a few months ago I was on our local moms forum and someone just recently had the same thing happen!  

  3. # Blogger shokufeh

    That sounds fun! What was the group?  

  4. # Blogger Kris

    That's great! I found a mom's group/ playdate group around here, and it's about the only thing that keeps me sane sometimes! =)  

  5. # Blogger Tracey

    I have belonged to various mom's groups over the past 8 1/2 years, one of which was when I was working (I worked until Justin was about 15 months old and got fed up with sitter problems). I am currently in one through an online source (Meetup.com) that is great. I can click on their calendar and pick from their schedule of stuff as fits my needs. I've met some really nice people. No longtime friends yet, but I'm not looking for a best friend: just FRIENDS. :) I sound lonely... I'm NOT!!  

  6. # Blogger Jesser

    Thanks so much for posting about this. I have been looking for a mom's group since my daughter was born (8 mos), but I work, and almost all of them are SAHM things!! I wanted to start my own, but I was having a huge problem finding some place to meet. There's one in my area ... and the meetings are at (get this!) 7 PM! Yay.

    Thanks again.  

  7. # Blogger Kristi

    For those interested, here's a link to Mothers and More, the moms group whose meeting I attended. They have local chapters all over the U.S.

    http://www.mothersandmore.org/  

  8. # Anonymous sher

    Well, this sounds promising! And they make those "months in advance" fruitcakes in the South. Truman Capote wrote a fabulous short story about it. I'm from the South and I think those fruitcakes are Weapons Of Mass Destruction. Awful!  

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