When my oldest baby was born, I was so excited to have the privilege of staying home with her! I imagined us going to the park, walking around the zoo and making hand print crafts to our hearts content. Being a stay at home mom has been my dream job since I can remember, and I had no doubt that SAHM life was the mom life for me!
When she arrived, my heart was fuller than I could imagine! I stared at the little stranger in my arms and couldn’t wait to get to know her! However, my transition into motherhood didn’t go exactly as I planned. I loved being a mom and my daughter, (and now my daughter and son), stole my heart completely! But I also struggled with anxiety and major feelings of isolation. It had never occurred to me before that motherhood would be lonely, even though I was never alone. We were the first of our friends to have kids, so I didn’t have a built in mama tribe, and while we loved our church family, there were no other young families in our small congregation. I found myself missing adult interaction and conversation terribly during the week.
I considered joining various mommy and me groups but the thought of taking my 2 month old on a “play date” seemed a little silly. So we stayed home. I mean, it’s called “stay at home mom”…it’s in the job description, right? What did I expect?
As the months passed, I fully enjoyed watching my daughter grow, but by her half birthday, I knew something had to change. I needed mom friends. Stat. I googled “mom groups OKC”, and found a group that met frequently near me. Their next play date was at a neighborhood splash pad. My daughter couldn’t even sit up yet, much less splash around, but I RSVPed and decided to go anyway!
As the date got closer, I almost chickened out. My new found social anxiety had me questioning everything. I knew the other moms had kids that were old enough to actually participate. I assumed they were all all ready friends. I would be an outsider, and I wasn’t even sure I remembered how to carry on a conversation that didn’t involve mimicking face gestures and speaking in a sing song voice. I had no idea what to even wear to a splash pad- a swim suit? swim suit and shorts? regular clothes??… This was five years ago, but if it was present day I would have been having ridiculous thoughts thoughts like “What if they use the word fleek? Can I fake my knowledge of fleek?”
Despite my anxious hesitation, my husband encouraged me to go, and we did! I was welcomed by the group’s coordinator, and introduced to a couple of other moms with little ones. It turns out they WEREN’T all life long friends and BFFs. They were moms just like me hoping to connect and find common ground with other mamas who understand the struggles and sweetness of motherhood. My daughter didn’t splash around. She mostly sat in my lap in the shade! BUT she enjoyed being out and about, and I left feeling refreshed and encouraged.
I didn’t make any life long friends THAT day (though I have met several “keepers” in mom groups since then!), but I did find friendly faces and the social interaction I was missing. I learned that while I am so happy with my choice to be a “stay at home mom”, my whole house is even happier when we just don’t stay home! I learned that play dates are just as much for mamas as they are for our children, and that as soon as you’re comfortable taking your little one out, you will be welcomed- no matter how old they are! I learned that it’s entirely possible, and even common, to feel lonely even when you don’t spend 5 minutes alone in a day, and I learned that motherhood is a season best enjoyed in the company of other mamas.
The Oklahoma City Moms Blog hopes to make finding your village a little bit easier! Our neighborhood playgroups were designed to help you connect with other mamas and build friendships that make motherhood even sweeter! Our playgroups are for every mama- new or seasoned, working mom or SAHM, all across the metro! We have 8 playgroups meeting in OKC and the surrounding areas, and we would love to have you be a part. For more information, visit our neighborhood playgroup page here!
If you’re interested in volunteering to coordinate play dates and helping moms connect as a Play Group Ambassador, visit THIS link.
Motherhood can be lonely, but it doesn’t have to be. If you’re searching for a mama tribe, we want to help. We would love for you to join us for a play date! Who knows, you might just find your new mama BFF! At the very least, you’ll be warmly welcomed and in the company of really awesome moms- just like you! Below are some of my favorite play dates from our neighborhood group!