When I started this whole blogging thing, it was an outlet for me, a diary of scribbles to let out all the feelings (and there were MANY feelings) that pregnancy had given me. I was huge, and trapped inside thanks to an inconsiderate storm which clearly didn’t understand that I needed chocolate and to escape my apartment. I certainly didn’t envision that 18 months later I’d still be writing, but not only that, actually having work I’ve written getting published in a magazine, where people would actually read it. I know, crazy.
I’m thrilled this month to see that Easy Parenting magazine, one of the big Irish Parenting magazines, has published an article I wrote about finding support structures when you become a parent, in particular if the traditional ones of family and friends aren’t the best option for you – for example, my family live on the other side of the country, and as the first of my friend group to have kids, my grumbles about lack of sleep, dirty nappies and eternal worries about developmental markers and the danger of colic weren’t understood or empathised with, so I had to find another way. I was very lucky to both get involved with my local Cuidiu group, thanks to a wonderful friend who I’d met through one of my closest friends who I lived with for four years, and to find an online family in both a “bump group” (women all due babies in the same month) and through the Irish Parenting Bloggers. Between these support systems, I have managed to get through the days of sleepless nights, screaming teething, temperatures, post natal depression and much much more. It isn’t that my family and friends are not supportive – they are- but at 3am when I’m worried about something, my online support crew tends to be there to listen and give advice, and the Cuidiu ladies have the doing coffee and a snack with a baby/toddler on your hip technique down to a tee, as well as giving incredible support about parenting choices regarding feeding, birth stories, childcare and much more. They get it – which through no fault of their own, just circumstance, my childless friends often don’t.
My article was intended to hopefully show women who are pregnant or just after having their baby the kinds of supports that are there. Years ago it would have been much more common to have an entire support community around you, family would rally around and life would have gotten along. However with an increase in people moving away from their home place in search of work/education/love/adventure and setting up home much further away, this immediate support structure isn’t always available, so it is good to know what other kind of options are out there. I’m really happy with how it turned out, and I’ve gotten a few good responses to it, which is really nice too.
You can check it out in Easy Parenting, August/September 2015 issue, available in all good newsagents, Boots, and a number of other shops. It also contains some fab pieces from the lovely Sadhbh from Where Wishes Come From and Tracey from Love of Living- A Lifestyle Blog – definitely worth checking out!