Next Wednesday I will attend my last MOPS meeting and I think I may be a blubbering, pile of tears. For those of you who don't know what MOPS is, I will give you a quick tutorial. MOPS stands for Mothers of Preschoolers. So basically you can attend if you have an infant through kindergartener. When you go to a MOPS meeting several things can and do happen.
1. You get a break from your infant or how many ever kids your toting along with you. They are lovingly cared for by a group of fantastic volunteers called MOPPET workers. Bonus if you have older kids because they learn great Bible lessons, do awesome crafts and have a snack.
2. There is food. Delicious, high carb, high sugar, indulgent, who gives a crap about the baby weight from my 2 year old, cheesy casseroly goodness.
3. There is a great speaker who makes it seems, for the half hour in which she speaks, that anything is possible in the grandscape of mothering. You could be the best mom, disciplinarian, wife, cook, friend, couponer ever to set forth in Kalamazoo county.
4. If there isn't a speaker you get to make a cool craft like a bracelet that's beads describe the birth of Christ, a freezer meal, a Christmas ornament, etc.
5. You get to actually have a conversation with another mommy who is on the same journey of mothering young children, just like you. No pressure to look a certain way or say the right thing. You can just be you, as you shove your face full of egg casserole and drink endless cups of coffee.( with as much creamer as your cup will hold.
6. If your lucky enough to pop out another kid during your tenure as a MOPS mom, lovely other mommies bring you awesome homemade meals. Complete with desserts!
7.Ok, a serious one. If you don't know Christ, you will get to. If you do, you can't help but grow in your faith.
I have been going to Southridge MOPS for six years. Matthew was just a wee lad of six months when I began. I remember checking on him like a bajillion times those first meetings, certain that the kid couldn't be torn from me for TWO hours! Fast forward six years and two more kids later. Lets just say when I drop Ellie off and she cries, I basically throw a diaper at them and say.."Don't come and get me until I have finished my strudel!" Just kidding...kinda!
I have met some of my dearest friends through MOPS. I have learned much through my time spent on Steering as MOPPETS co-coordinator, Small group leader and Co-Hospitality member.
My faith has grown much through the speakers and relationships I have been blessed to be a part of.
I know next Fall, when the first and third Wednesdays roll around, I will ache for the fellowship that MOPS provided. But,I will also know that my time there is complete. While I was there, MOPS served me well. It provided a safe place to get a break and get a little more grounded in myself and in my faith. It well equipped me and now its time to get going to the next phase of this journey called motherhood. I know I will tuck my MOPS experience away deep in my heart and treasure it always.
Who knows, I might just come back someday and be one of those lovely ladies that sits and rocks that newborn and gently encourages a new mom to get the heck out of the nursery and into the meeting..her studel is waiting!