For me, it really started with my second child.
I distinctly remember sitting on the couch nursing my newborn daughter while my toddler did everything and anything he could think of to regain my full attention. I felt paralyzed. I thought, “how can I possibly take care of two tiny humans simultaneously all by myself?”
Then my toddler became a “threenager”—a very precocious, obstinate, charismatic, pseudo-independent three year old, and I almost lost my mind.
Most days I would end up putting both kids down for a nap and I would sit on the floor thinking, “how did I get here? Is this really my life?” and I would just sob.
I’m a planner. I like goals and vision boards. I like to be in control. I earned a Master of Science in a field I loved, and created my own unique position within a locally owned company that I was very proud of, and very passionate about.
That was my identity. I thought I could just be a mom “on the side.”
God knows me too well for that. He had different plans.
I don’t do anything – anything – half way. One by one every plan that I had; every option I thought I had available, God stripped away. And slowly the identity I had created and become completely absorbed in was stripped away, too.
I was a full-time stay at home mom who had completely lost her sense of self.
What I have discovered and continue to learn is that I am so much more than a title or a job description.
Although giving up my sense of self to teach, serve, and shape these precious little people is the hardest thing I have ever done physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually, I recognize God is filling that emptiness with his strength; sustaining me and even giving me glimpses of who He is ultimately creating me to be.
I truly believe that I am positioned exactly where God wants me to be for now.
I also firmly believe that none of us are meant to do life alone.
Staying at home, shaping the future society of America is daunting, exhausting, frustrating, and just plain hard. If we are not careful, it is easy to become isolated, overwhelmed, and discouraged.
We need other women around us regularly to commiserate with, to laugh with, to encourage us, to understand us, to love us, and to just help us feel that we are not alone.
We are all human. We are all doing the best that we can. And God is doing for us, and in us, what we can’t.
To that end, I have created a small community of mamas that meet once a week with our kids in tow to just hang out. We get to know each other; talk about life, the joys and the struggles; and build each other up.
It’s a safe space to just be yourself.
Your kids get to socialize and play, while you get to connect with other women who are all in the same boat.
Connection and community is paramount to raising kids.
I’d like to invite you to come see what we are all about!
What: play group for moms at home with kids. Whether you’re kids are babies, toddlers, in school part-time, or homeschooled, all are welcome!
When: 9:30-11:30 each Thursday
Where: location varies, but we typically try to keep it free– parks, libraries, Focus on the Family, coffee shops, etc. Currently we are using a Facebook group called “Mama’s Meet Up” to communicate where we’re meeting each week. Contact Audra for details.
Why: Staying home to invest in children is a unique calling that is simultaneously the most beautiful and demanding job out there. If we are not intentional about finding and investing in a community, it is easy to become isolated and discouraged. The purpose of this group is to create a safe and welcoming place for women in a similar life stage to come and find friendship, build relationships, commiserate, help, and encourage each other.