When I was expecting Dylan, a friend of mine who already had a baby told me I had to find my Rollercoaster group and get involved. I’d never heard of this before but here she was raving about how invaluable her group was to her and that I’d be mad not to go on and register. To be honest I thought she was off her head, chatting to strangers online seemed a bit weird but nevertheless that evening I went home to check it out. It was an online forum split into sections categorised by due date. Everyone posting questions within that section were all expecting babies within the same month so were all going through the same issues, worries and emotions as each other. I posted up my question (whatever it was I can’t remember now!) and got replies almost immediately putting my mind at ease that whatever I was going through was normal. Little did I know then how much of an impact the women in that forum would have on my life.
I’ve said it before and I’ll probably say it again a million times but being a mammy is hard. It’s exhausting, it’s draining and it can also feel quite isolating. Friends without children or who haven’t been through pregnancy just don’t get it, and family can be too close to comfort to turn to. Sometimes you just need a group of girls who are going through the same thing as you are.
I used to laugh at the term “mummy-friends” but that’s just what you need when you’re a new mum. It’s only once you have a baby and fall into your mummy tribe you realise how invaluable these ladies are. After “meeting” on the Rollercoaster forum, we set up a private Facebook and through this we got to know each better.
Over a year has passed since I joined the Facebook group and since then I’ve met almost all the girls in person (some live further down the country but there’s plans in place to meet them soon too!) We’ve shared everything from pregnancy moans to birth announcements; rants about our other halves to excitement over our babies milestones. No question is too silly to ask and no news is too little to share.
We support each other. We give encouragement to each other. There’s been a lot of smiles and even a good few tears. They’ve given me advice when I thought I was failing, they’ve listened to my frantic rants about shitty days and lack of sleep, they’ve given encouragement and praise on days where I really needed it, they’ve given me the confidence to trust my natural instincts as a mum, and have supported me through some of our hardest times as a family. Yes we have differences in opinions – you try finding a group of woman who all have the exact same idea’s on how to raise a child! – but we respect each other’s decisions. With so much judging and arguing over the best ways to raise your baby going on out there, this is definitely a welcomed change.
The girls and babies that Dylan and I are always on play dates with and have our overpriced lattes with? They’re all from my group! The ones that live close by and that I meet with regularly have become great friends of mine.
Even my husband will now turn to me and say, “what would your girls from the group do?” if we’re unsure about something which always gives me a giggle!
This all sounds so mushy and cliché but I can’t put into words how it feels to know these woman have your back no matter what.
I still have my own group of friends from before I was pregnant, and of course I have the support of family, but I know Dylan and I would be lost without these girls now. Taylor Swift’s girl squad might seem impressive but it ain’t a patch on our squad! 😉