Despite the uncertain initial months in my working moms group, I stuck with it and it has proven to be a positive experience.
When I started writing this blog more than two years ago, my first posts were on my foray into the world of electronic friendships. Specifically, I was venturing out into a meetup.com group to establish friendships in my community with working moms like me. It was scary and weird and uncertain. However, given the difficulty I find connecting with colleagues who are as crazy-busy as I and the challenges of keeping things professional with other clinical staff, I was limited in how well I could establish friendships the old-fashioned way.
Despite the uncertain initial months in my working moms group, I stuck with it and it has proven to be a positive experience. On Saturday night, our group came together for a birthday celebration/kick-off party prior to one of our members starting chemo this week. The group has pulled together to organize meals and childcare and other forms of help. We’re close enough that we can comfortably joke around with each other one moment but grow solemn the next as we discuss the reality of a young mom facing a terrible diagnosis.
In the “old days,” when my parents and even I were growing up, neighbors and friends would coalesce around you during times of trouble. That still happens, in some neighborhoods more than others. I trust that if we found ourselves in a difficult situation, our neighbors would offer help and meals and such. However, it is also true that we’re all busy and disconnected and distracted and plugged into the Internet more than our own communities sometimes.
I find it comforting that despite how my mom’s group met or formed, we’re still like the coffee clutches my mom had when I was growing up. We’re still just women sitting around a table, complaining about the challenges of motherhood, comparing war stories, asking for advice, and buoying each other up during moments of crisis.
I’m not amazed that our group came together to support our friend. I would have been more shocked if it didn’t. But, I’m amazed that an online invitation two years ago led to such a good, close group of women.
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