On maternity leave, you spend a LOT of time with other mums. You talk about mum things, baby things and everything in between. You sing an unhealthy amount of nursery rhymes (or make up the lyrics as I often do) and maybe even jump around like ball of lead (or blob of jelly in my case), just to make your little one smile. But let’s be honest, they spend the whole session looking at someone else’s mother.
Even when a conversation starts being totally unrelated to motherhood or babies, in a matter of minutes it can somehow go back to being about babies. Very little conversation relates to the ‘real you’, if you know who that is anymore. With this being my second time around, I really wanted to try and find some activities that involved my baby but weren’t just about him. Preferably not in a stuffy church hall, surrounded by toys that have been sucked or puked on by a thousand other children beforehand – is that too much to ask??
I thought it was until I stumbled upon two fab groups within a very short amount of time.
Mamas Collective is a new group for like-minded women who still want to enjoy life, even with babies. Mummy meet ups at trendy Manchester locations, with “events designed to help out mamas in one way of another – things like workshops on how to start your own business; talks from inspiring mums who are killing it at achieving the perfect work-life balance; meet ups where you can chat about different issues surrounding modern motherhood; and even pamper sessions where you can get your “nails done” or your “hair did” uninterrupted.” And best of all you can take baby with you!
I was lucky enough to attend the launch at Ziferblat, which is a great space. With Boy 2 by my side, it was great to chat to other women who happen to be mums, chat about life past, present and future. It’s always refreshing to discover you aren’t alone when it comes to any concerns about life as a mother. Plus there was cake, which is always a bonus. Mamas Collective has some exciting plans for future events. Just a shame I might not make many as I’ll be back at work (enough said about that, the better).
Molly, the founder, is fab. A really bubbly, friendly character, who I’m slightly in awe of for setting up something like this with a 4 month old baby!
I love the phrase on their FB page “Because making the effort to stay stylish, remaining ambitious and pursuing your passions doesn’t make you a bad mum – it make you a happier one.” Definitely worth remembering when you start to feel guilty for spending a few minutes threading your eyebrows or getting your nails ‘did’.
The Guilty Mothers’ Club
Speaking of guilt, I met the lovely Helen Bryce-Kisby, founder of the Guilty Mothers’ Club. Just the name alone sounds like something all women should be involved in. The group is described as a place “to share, inspire and most importantly support each other to create a life that works combining work, family and time for Prosecco.”
What’s great about GMC is that they run themed monthly-ish supper clubs, where women get together (child-free this time) to share and discuss a particular topic, usually after hearing from a speaker. Its almost like group life coaching as you get the chance to think and prepare in advance. I couldn’t attend that last event, but have booked my ticket for January’s session which will be on ‘Vision’, something I think is so easy to lose when your life is consumed by little people.
Groups like these are usually exclusive to yummy mummies in London, so its great to see some Manchester mums taking the lead up North. So please do support them and spread the word. Maybe even try coming along to an event.
Hopefully see you there one day! x