Recently I polled friends and clients about what was most helpful for new parenthood, the early postpartum period. There were many useful responses but one reply resonated deeply with me. My friend, Abby Ritter, suggested going to breastfeeding support groups during pregnancy:she said it was important to find your tribe.
Even in the busyness of today’s society, we still need to sit quietly with folks that know us. We still need support, comfort and encouragement. We still need mentoring, to see others interact with their children. Even in this day and age, we still need our tribe. But here in Upstate NY, in the twenty-first century, can you find them? As my friend’s reply suggested, you can and you should.
To find your tribe, look for individuals within groups; notice the ones that resonate with you, that appear to almost shimmer In your periphery. Find people that have something in common with you – love of music, concern for clean water, passion for breastfeeding or baby wearing. In NY’s Capital District there are a variety of groups where you might find the folks of your tribe: You can visit LCM Moms £ More, Family Life Center, ICan, SlingBabies, La Leche League, Holistic Moms Network, Breastfeeding USA, childbirth classes, Debra Goodman’s Pregnancy Workout, the list goes on. There are also possibilities for finding your tribe on-line: FaceBook elists, due date groups, and so much more. Search for the groups that appeal to you, then notice the individuals that draw you.
Wherever you go, find the people that will support you, challenge you, mentor you. Find the people with whom you can swap ideas, swap meals, or swap maternity clothes. Find your people one at a time or by the handful. However you manage it, find your tribe.
On the journey to be the best (pregnant/birthing/parenting) person you can be, it is work to find your tribe. It is hard work. It is sometimes lonely work. But it is work worth doing.
May you find people that will nurse their children in front of you, create art and meals with you, share stories, laughter, tears, hunt or scrapbook with you. May you find people that will sit quietly or dance with you wildly. May you find your tribe.
May all babies be born into loving hands
PS: This Saturday, March 24, 2012, at 6:30 PM, My Tribe is having it’s first gathering, at The Breathing Room in Delmar, NY. For more information, go to The Breathing Room website, or look for us on FaceBook.