A topic that can show you exactly what type of mummy you are talking to. You get those mummies who absolutely love baby groups with their best friends (who also have babies) who ‘do’ lunch afterwards and you get those mummies who shudder at the thought of attending a baby group and interacting with other mums.
I am definitely one of the latter. The thought of sitting in a room full of mums who already have their friends or clicks literally makes me shiver. I am not the most sociable person at the best of times and I am definitely not a clicky mum. I admit I would love to be a mum who lunches with other mums, who has friends with babies and have play dates. Dont get me wrong I meet up with friends and family who have babies and we love it but strangers is a whole different ball game.
Recently I decided I needed to put my feelings of baby groups aside and try one out.
To the outside world Ellie is an only child and in a sense she really is because she doesnt have her brother showing her how to share or take turns, I know by letting her interact with other babies I am teaching her the life lessons that a lot of children lack.
We joined a group called Hartbeeps and although we have only been three times (Ellie was poorly for one session) I am amazed at the difference in her. Rather than climb me and worry she is too far away, I am now chasing her around the room while she smiles and waves to the other babies (also giving another mummy a cheeky bit of attention in the hope she can swipe her mobile without her looking!!)
What I like most about Hartbeeps is that the focus isnt on meeting new mums and gossiping it is about spending quality time with your babies, interacting with them through song and funny movements. The use of props is amazing and I really wish Ellie would keep the hats on long enough for me to get a picture. It is a fun afternoon with my daughter and something I actually look forward to.
I am still dreading the day that we start getting asked those awful questions all mummies feel the need to ask; “Is she your first?” “How many children do you have?” and when you answer 2 “Aw is your other one at school?” These questions should never be asked, it shouldnt be assumed that all mummies have their babies with them. I know some amazing mummies who dont get to hold their babies yet they are some of the best mummies I know. I still find it hard knowing how to answer these questions. I so badly want to talk about Jason but also know unless you have walked in my ugly, uncomfortable, grief ridden shoes that talking about a baby who died can be morbid and really awkward for the other person so it is hard finding that balance.
I genuinely think that if Jason had lived I would never have gone to a baby group, and I feel sad knowing I would have failed him by not letting him interact. I also know that by him dying I am more open and aware of the fact that Ellie needs social interaction and I am simply not enough.