Culture, Lifestyle, Motherhood, Parenting, Uncategorized

I am #CamMama

 

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Seek out your Sisterhood, it just might be in your ‘hood (Image via Milkyway)

Reading the September issue of Smallish – if you don’t read it , please give it a try – one particular feature really a struck a chord with me ‘Baby, I’m bored’ (p.35-39) by Emma Howarth highlighting the Mum group revolution that’s gaining momentum aka ‘Mum-entum©’?; I’m proud to say that this is something that I am a (small) part of, as a bonafide member of Cambridgeshire’s own #CamMama Collective.

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Smallish, September 2016

Back when I was expecting, I discovered a true pioneer of this modern movement: Mothers Meeting  by Jenny Scott via Insomnia induced late night Social Media scrolling (sometimes it pays off). At once completely down-to-earth & ultimately inspiring, Jenny preached to my inner voice choir; the one that was crippled with Anxiety & first time parent fears whilst experiencing many long months of Hyperemesis Gravidarum. I didn’t get out much & I certainly didn’t glow, I glowered at best.  Less of a lightbulb moment, it was a giant neon moment (well, red & white but BOLD). I had discovered a virtual soul Sisterhood. I instantly felt a lot less lonely, still terrified but, hey that was O.K! I ordered myself a copy of Jenny’s book ‘How To Be A Hip Mama Without Losing Your Cool’

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An Instagram shot from when I was 31 Weeks

Later it all gets a little serendipitous & quite frankly, weird. I vividly remember reading this (p.157) & thinking ‘ooh, she seems nice! Linton is near here! Make a mental note to look up MM Cambridge.’ Of course, I completely forgot. I was about to get busy with a baby.

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My Pregnancy Bible. Same sheets, different day!

I won’t divulge my Birth Story here, but Poppy Elena Osborne arrived on 18th April 2015 weighing in at a mighty 9lb 5oz. (‘workin’ 9-5, what a way to make a livin’…’). She was Full Term & ‘healthy’ until the next morning arrived & she was whisked away into SCBU. She remained in & out of Hospital for quite some time; I’ll explain more in a later post about her condition but rest assured she is thriving in every sense now & is just the happiest, most joyful little girl 🙂

I tried & failed at integrating with the ‘Mother & Baby’ groups on my doorstep. At first it was perhaps too soon for me. When Poppy first (finally!) arrived home I was desperate just to get out & about. I too, had spent a long time in Hospital so with late Spring in the air, if certainly not in my step, I ventured to a typical ‘From Bump to Baby’ session nearby. P was by far the youngest baby & therefore I was the newest Mother. The staff & group were warm & welcoming; I think they felt a bit sorry for me as I was quite clearly a nervous wreck, despite my attempts to mask it with a cheery lipstick – probably smudged all over my gritted teeth.

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Sharon (Sharon Horgan) in Catastrophe attempts to escape the ‘Mom-bies’ I’d happily be her BFF.

To cut a long & sad story short, I kept trying but my opportunities to mix with Mums were soured by more health complications. When I did pluck up the strength to go back, those sweet Mothers I had initially met had all moved on to the Toddler groups (I don’t know where – obviously I was struggling with basic human function/THE TIREDNESS/lack of confidence to remember to get contact details). The new group was filled with Mothers of babies the same age as P – great! Or so I thought.

After more than a few snide comments & disapproval at my lack of Nursery Rhyme lyrics, I just couldn’t be bothered to persist. I didn’t even venture farther afield as seemingly some of these cruel individuals had a Monopoly going by attending practically every group in the wider area. Perhaps their need to be around others, rather than enjoy the company of their child, & criticising others made them feel better about themselves? Well, they can keep their Battleship because I’m not playing that game.

I can’t remember how or when Sian of Bone White China got back in touch. We had first ‘met’ online through mutual friends & she had kindly invited me to review the EAT Cambridge Festival which she was working on at the time. It turned out she had a two daughters, one a similar age to age to P, & that she & her friend Alex were hosting an alternative get-together for Cambridgeshire Mums. Alex, was none other than Mrs ‘Country Vibes’! Halle-flippin’-lujah!

The rest is history.

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Sian & Alex hosting the Cam Mama Summer Party (photo by me!)

Since the inaugural Cam Mama Christmas event, I have been to everything these ladies so thoughtfully organise. I am so proud to call them friends & eternally grateful for their kindness, support, laughter & inspiration; not to mention a LOT of cakes (+more than a few Gins). When it comes to Food, Drink & creative fun nobody does it better round these parts. Most importantly they have enriched my life with a new gang of girls; each unique & diverse in their hobbies, interests, careers, parenting methods & style. ‘Variety is the very spice of life, that gives it all its flavour’ & #CamMama packs a punch as well as a great picnic.

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Snapshot of the Summer Party 

Find out all about the next Seasonal Cam Mama Event HERE 

Take a look at what we get up to in the Gallery & on Facebook

 

 

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2 thoughts on “I am #CamMama

  1. Love this blog. My gang are a little older than yours but i remember how it all felt and also how despite loving my children to the moon and back, sometimes i just wanted to talk about something other than sleep, weaning and nappies. I bumped into a small selection of real mums who were happy to talk about everything and admit when it went wrong. 11 years on we are still friends. I have worked with Alex and Sian and i hope they know it, as i have told them enough, they are awesome and an inspiration x

    • Thank you so much! I think so many of us, wherever you are in the journey of Motherhood, just need an outlet of our own that compliments & enhances our lifestyles as parents. Not in a clique-y way but one of togetherness & all inclusive. It’s so refreshing & inspiring. S x

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