NL moms used the power of togetherness to share all the firsts of that special year one of motherhood to make it the best it could possibly be for both baby and momma
Stefanie Knight, Nicole Boland, Cagney Hughes, and Laura Benson all have one thing in common; they are moms, and that’s all that’s required when it comes to sharing special time together.
Boland is from Torbay and is mom to E.J., who’s now 10 months old. “One of the girls, (Knight) actually started this group. She’s from Pouch Cove and got in contact with someone from the town and asked for a space for mothers in the area to get together and that evolved into this,” she says with a smile.
Food, Fun & Babies
These days, around 16 moms and their babies gather at the Stiles Cove Recreation Complex for food, fun, and a whole lot of crawling around!
“Moms come from all over for a few hours. We have a potluck and we bring our own toys and we chat and the babies play.”
The women also get together in smaller groups, for walks, tea, and just to vent! “We’ve stuck together. We’ve evolved into close friends. The children have brought us together. We go swimming once a week and we try and walk whenever we can either inside or outside and we are there for one another.”
Having a mommy group is great, Boland adds, because sharing is so important in that first year. “A year off can be isolating, so the social for us is perhaps the biggest thing. The babies are getting to know each other too, and eventually they will all end up going to school together. It’s nice that we can have that bond now that can see the kids – and us – through school and through life’s stages really.”
‘Out of the House’
Benson is first-time mom to Wyatt, who’s nine months old. “We do this to get out of the house. We also get together at home to have a cup of tea and vent about babies who don’t sleep,” she says, giving her now smiling son a little teasing tummy tickle. “Sleeping and teething are huge things. I know the stages end, but some seem like they go on longer than others,” she laughs.
Knight and her 10 month-old son, Preston Vardy agree. That’s why she wanted to start something like this, she shares. “I saw there wasn’t a lot for kids and moms in our area. This is for the moms to come and chat and for the babies to interact. If you don’t know anyone, the days at home can be long. Which is why this is so important.”
Is Mother’s Day a big deal? All the moms answer a resounding, YES!
“I just want to be treated; maybe super out, something to recognize how hard this actually is, but I want to spend Mother’s Day with my child. I don’t want a day off. It’s my first Mother’s Day so this is special,” says Knight.
All the moms gathered agree that you have to take mothering on a day-to-day basis – from behaviours to illnesses to milestones – there’s questions and concerns. But being together makes a world of difference.
And not all are first time moms. Hughes is mom to three and she’s there with her youngest, 11 month-old Daniel.
“My others are aged six and four. We just moved here after my second child and I had another small child at home so I didn’t get out much and I didn’t make friends, so this is great. I’m getting out and meeting new moms and making friends. It’s good just talking to other moms and watching as our babies meet their milestones. You feel like you are not alone in the good and the bad of parenting in a group like this. Things change; feeding guidelines are different now than when I had my first,” she says.
But while uncovering mommy tips are great, it really is all about the social.
“I didn’t know any of these women before I had Daniel. I just went to a coffee shop one day and met some of these women and we’ve been going to play dates ever since. It’s beautiful bonding with other women in the same situation, who have the same challenges, and being there for one another is special. I know we will all stay friends,” she says.
Boland tears up a little.
“The whole social aspect is the biggest thing. Maternity leave can be isolating if you don’t know anybody. You are home alone, really. Because we’ve connected, we have instant friends. You have so much in common, it’s beautiful. I honestly don’t know if I would have made it this far without these women. I really don’t.”
Happy Mother’s Day ladies! We hope it’s the best and then some!