26 October 2014

Mother's meeting - week 39

Week 39 | 2014

It took Chuck and I a long time to find a baby group that we could be part of. When he was a wee baby he was a nap monster. He wouldn't nap on the move, he wouldn't settle in a pram or in my arms and, if he fell asleep in the car, he would almost certainly wake when the wheels of the car came to a standstill.

He was a baby that needed his naps and I was [and remain to be] a mother who needed them just as much as he did. This made getting out and socialising with my bebe difficult for a long while. Even now he has a good two or three hours in the afternoon. These days I'm more relaxed about timings and have even been known [on rare occasions] to let him miss his nap if we have a very good social event as an excuse.

We were well into Chuck's second year of being when I finally found a local group of mamas who met regularly at a time that suited our nap regimen. You never really know how these meets are going to go - lord knows I've been to my fair share of them and have come away bored and feeling isolated, so often they are clingy affairs. I usually find myself on the side lines, struggling to integrate. I even had a stab at starting a local mama and baby group which fell flat on its face when the 4 members of the group [of which I was one of them] failed to ascertain a time and day for us all to meet regularly.

So I was very pleased when another local lady reignited the fire of the local NCT coffee morning and it was a success! Finally Chuck and I are part of something familiar, something regular. Friendships are being forged and, for the first time, I feel as though we belong; we are welcome; we are accepted. We are home.

I am seeing my son grow, develop in personality and in independence. And somehow, it is rubbing off on me.

I will forever be the person who questions themselves. I am learning to accept this about myself while trying not to let it hold me back as I have done for so so long. Such wonderful things can happen when you feel comfortable with people.

I have felt comfortable enough to share my passion and interest in photography with the group and, encouraged by my mama compadres, I have taken photographs in public, of other people's children - for the first time ever. Some of which you see here - today. I cannot underestimate the value of this personal milestone.

To say I was anxious would not be an understatement. But I pushed myself to do it and I'm so glad I did. I'm beginning to develop my craft in ways I had never expected and this group's influence cannot be denied. And subsequently, I am nervously looking forward to taking some more private shots of some of these amazing kiddos and their families. I'm scared but I am trying to embrace the fear and not hide from it. This is a fundamental change in personality.

My first-born son, Chuck, is really the catalyst for all of this change. I owe him everything.

Belatedly linking up with Jodi.

1 comment

  1. So happy that you've found a group you feel comfortable with, and that its helping with your photography too, that's ace! George was the opposite with naps (ie he didn't ever want to have any and mostly preferred to scream, which made socialising (and sanity!) difficult...) so I know what you mean about leaving groups feeling lonely and isolated. I'm having another baby in March and hopefully this time I'll manage to find a group that works for me :) Congratulations on your new addition too! Exciting times xxx


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