Maybe something that took the wind out of my sails was last May I learned that the special needs school that I worked at was closing. It was sad. I loved my part time Art Therapist gig. It was right up my creative alley of helping kids and making art. I knew I was going to miss it. And I wasn't sure what I was going to do to fill my time. Oy, the things we can worry about.
My time has so quickly been filled! In lieu of kids who can't cope in school, I am now spending my day with new moms and their babies. And it's been so wonderful. A local pediatricians office in the Pittsburgh area has a free support group for new moms. If you're looking for a way to connect with local new moms, Kids Plus Pediatrics, New Mom's Coffee is a great resource!
It's the most brilliant of ideas that I wish I could have found back when I was on the other side of momming. Back when I felt home alone with a silent or not so silent fragile, mystery baby. Back when I was trying to figure out what was normal and what was okay. Back when I read every. Darn. book. about.... wait for it... getting sleep! Because pretty much every mom faces these challenges at some point. I was lucky that my sister was only 9 months behind me, but at the time of having my son, I did not know many other mamas and none in my area. It was so very isolating. So now, I sit in a circle of new moms starting out on this journey and watch them empathize and share and get to know that they are not the only ones whose child hates tummy time or whose kid is learning how lick everything in their ever expanding path. And I kinda love being able to assure them that momming is wonderful and complicated and not one size fits all. And, babies- babies talk back a whole lot less than the kids I used to work with!
Another wonderful opportunity that has filled my days- and some nights- is working at another wonderful local community resource. Parents in Toto is an autism resource center. It is a non-profit that is a place where families and individuals affected by autism can come and find community. It is also a unique and creative gem in the area. I have been working on integrating my art therapy background into it and have loved that. Working with kids on the spectrum is something that I have done for over a decade and it never is same-old same-old. Individuals with autism are so unique, creative and have so many wonderful strengths. We had an art show and auction in August that was fabulous and we're going to do another one in May! I can't wait. If you're local, I would love for you to come! I will pour you a glass of wine!
We have had a fun past year. And my hubby was great with adventuring with the kids this summer while I started working more. I am still in limbo on being a sahm mom and a wahm mom and a working mom. (is that a WM?) Transitions are hard. The kids are cute though when they ask- are you going to mom's group or Toto today? Keeping them on their toes, just like they've been doing the past 8 years!
So, now that I have finished up this "Yes, I am still here" post, I will proceed to post in the near future about some of the fun we've been having and the things we've been making! As always, we've been keeping it creative and having fun! Hope you are too. And as always to stay in touch with the day to day, follow me on Instagram and join my FB group!