Friday, May 27, 2011

Connecting with Moms

I had the pleasure of attending my first ever mom support group. I am okay with a support group setting. I know it's not for everyone, and I didn't know if it was for me. It is.

Like I said, it was our first time meeting and there were only four moms (to start). All of us clearly different, but all of us women, advocates for our children, all of us with something wonderful to contribute.

One of our topics today was the expectation of confidentiality within our group. Of course my first thought was "you mean I can't blog about this?" So I said it. I am making an executive decision to blog about my experience, but I won't use names.

Here is what I noticed. All of us have a son, a daughter with a diagnosis of a different kind. All of us are different personalities, but I can see a connection with each one of them on a individual basis.

We all have in common, a loss of our own identity at some point or another, a time when it all seemed hopeless, a time of complete acceptance with a smile, a heartache with a tear. Some of us have a positive outlook, some of us feel despair and hopelessness. All of us have friends who are great, wonderful, kind and caring. We also know our friends have their own lives. They have busy lives with jobs that consume them, kids that keep them busy, their own troubles.  What we crave, is someone who will listen, talk with us, let us cry, not judge us. What we crave is that small group of people who understand our emotional struggle, understand knowingly why we don't want to send our child to a particular sport event with the school, a classmates birthday party, a sleepover, or why we don't want our child to be friends with a certain girl/boy that we know will not honor them. That is what we crave, even if for one hour.

I was glad to feel a connection with each one of them, all in a different way, that left me feeling full of healthy anticipation for the next meeting. I wonder what friendships will form, how we will help and support each other, how big will the group grow to be?

Sitting in that group, reinforced for me that I am strong, I am confidant, I am helpful and capable and caring. I am also able to be vulnerable, I have learned to share my feelings and myself more than I ever have before. Although I find it difficult to ask for help, I let these ladies know that I need help, I welcome it, along with any ideas, suggestions, support, love and acceptance.

I hope that this is the beginning of something powerful.

Thanks for stopping by!

Tannis

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