We have all heard the saying that it takes a village to raise a child. I believe it takes a mom community to raise a mom. This became VERY clear to me after the birth of my baby girl. I tend to be organized and prepared – a quality that has served me well in my job where I do a lot of multitasking with various teams of people. When it came to being a mom, however, there was no amount of organization or preparedness that could help me through some of the unforeseen events of my first steps in motherhood.
It started with my labor and delivery. I had my flexible birth plan all printed out so I was ready to go when I went into labor (I thought I was being prepared for anything by making it flexible – ha!). Nothing could have prepared me for the distress I experienced ten hours into my 21.5 hr labor and delivery. I had complications and what was supposed to be a joyous time of finally seeing and holding my baby, became a very scary time where we almost lost her. So much for my natural delivery and home bonding time! We ended up being in the hospital for a week which only gave us 1 day home with my husband before he had to return to work.
That was the start to a list of sickness and challenges for me and my baby. I never would have made it through those first few months without my family – my sister who became a second mom to my baby and became my extra set of hands, my mom who was encouraging me and cleaning my house, my mother in law who brought over meals, my friends (especially Sarah-my wisdom mom) who listened to me vent and my virtual mom community who became very real advocates for me.
My virtual mom community just came together without me organizing or preparing for it. Maybe that is what makes it so beautiful – it’s pure gift.
- Jennifer from Life After the Alter was one of the first to encourage me as my husband and I tried to get pregnant and it was not happening right away. She had been down that road and understood it well. She rejoiced with me as soon as she heard the news of my pregnancy and encouraged me along the way.
- I was able to laugh with Jennifer and Dee, two Kolcraft Moms, who I was lucky enough to share a few weeks of pregnancy with as they both prepare for baby #3.
- Jackie, another pregnant Kolcraft mom, gave me tips on helping baby sleep.
- Melissa, featured on a Mom Monday, was the first to help me take steps towards healing after birth trauma. She understood on a very personal level all that I went through and became an angel of hope for me.
- Ria and Suzanne from My Mommy Manual, gifted me with mom insight and friendship. (I’m so looking forward to taking their parenting course!)
- Christine from Girl on Fire reminds me to live my bliss and embrace it even when it’s difficult.
- Valerie from A Nation of Moms has taken me by the hand to help me past the mommy guilt of breastfeeding issues, having to put my baby in daycare while I work and a host of other “hot button mom guilt issues”.
These women and many more are my momtourage – women who inspire, encourage and love me on my mom journey. I’m new at this whole mommy journey, but I have a host of moms to walk with me and I wouldn’t trade it for the world.
Who has helped you on your mom journey?