Even though this is a sewing blog, I cannot write about something this close to my heart without including a lot of personal information. In various posts, in order to explain the project or the situation, I have and will continue to mention a group of women who have played an integral part of my life since 1977. We are not, as one new acquaintance assumed, a group who attends plays together.
We are a group of women who first gathered one morning in 1977 so that our children could play together.Weddings, bridal and baby showers are sponsored by the entire group and they have all been fabulous events. These and other occasions have included a significant amount of my sewing, some creative, some purely utilitarian. Many of these projects will be featured in posts on this blog.
When my first child was just three years old, I was blessed with an invitation to be a charter member of a new group of like-minded stay-at-home moms. The group’s original goal was to give our single, first born children an opportunity to socialize. Once a week, we took turns serving as hostess in our homes, and though soon there were more children, the number of mothers remained the same. The children played or fought or nursed or slept under the watchful eyes of 8 mothers. For the moms, therapy began upon arrival. It was the highlight of the week for all of us, including the children.
“Where would you be without friends? The people who pick you up when you need lifting? We come from homes far from perfect, so you end up almost parent and sibling to your friends–your own chosen family. There’s nothing like a really loyal, dependable, good friend. Nothing.” Jennifer Aniston
Nothing except 7 such friends.
The eight of us gathered in the morning for years and years, until all the children were in school and several of us had returned to the workplace. This diverse group now includes a gourmet cook, university media specialist, the assistant manager of a major airport, several educators–1 teacher of high school English and drama, 1 teacher of severely emotionally handicapped children, 1 teacher of retarded children, 1 teacher of varying exceptionalities–and now, a sewing blogger. Among these same women are a cross stitcher, a quilter and the author of the first book on shadow embroidery –Mary Hale, Shadow Work published by Martha Pullen. But for many years now, I have been the only passionate needleworker.
Once our daytime availability was used up, we began meeting for dinner every other week, sometimes in restaurants, sometimes in the home of a PGM in the mood to cook. We still do.
Together we have laughed, cried, worried and prayed our way through life’s struggles, celebrations and tragedies, always coming away at the end of the evening or event a little stronger for having shared time and balm of friendship.
Between the eight of us, we have 23 children. In celebration terms, the tally is 7 local weddings and more baby and bridal showers than I can count. At this time, we still have four unmarried daughters, in addition to several bachelor sons. So more celebrations are upcoming.
I’ve spent a considerable amount of time searching unsuccessfully for a bit of wisdom that circled the internet not long ago. Essentially, it was sage advice given by a mother to her newly wed daughter. In short, she said the young wife should ASAP seek out girlfriends, a support network. For no matter how wonderful is your husband, he can neither understand nor meet all the needs of a woman/wife/mother. I couldn’t agree more.
Do you have a support network? Does it include sewing? I would love to hear about any similar groups.