New mums in Erewash are invited to an event next week to hear about an app which could ease some of the stresses and strains of those early years.
Emma Allen, 27, is hosting the free meet-up at the Long Eaton Family Support Centre on Friday, October 27, 9.30-11.30am, to highlight the benefits of Mush, which has been dubbed ‘Tinder for mums’.
She said: “The app helps women to meet like-minded mums living near them, with children of a similar age.
“It’s areally useful tool for those new to motherhood. I’ve used it to reach out to other people and meet up with them at local groups or go for coffee. Meeting other mums has never been this easy.”
Emma’s is a voice of experience. Her family now includes three-year-old son Isaac and five-month-old Lilah, and both have added to the understanding of new motherhood she gained with her oldest daughter Ellie eight years ago.
After a difficult birth, she was left suffering with postnatal depression and post traumatic stress disorder.
She said: “I was only young, just finding my own way in life. Suddenly I had a tiny person to find the way for too.
“I was turned away from the Surestart centre nearest my house as I wasn’t in the catchment area and sent to one 20 minutes drive away - I had only just passed my driving tests and the thought of a screaming soundtrack for the journey filled me with dread.”
Mush aims to tackle the isolation felt by many new mothers, helping them share their experiences and the vital tips necessary for navigating one of life’s biggest challenges.
Emma said: “I found myself circling the local Tesco on a daily basis to buy dinner each day, just for some adult interaction and some fresh air.
“We’re all in the same boat, going goo-goo talking gah-gah all day and placing household items in the fridge through the lack of sleep.”
She added: “Mostly though, we’re lacking in confidence in this new world that we’ve been thrust into, with an unpredictable bundle of joy for company which can make even nipping to the shop for milk a tricky task.”
Emma’s relationship with motherhood began to change when she moved to a new area when Ellie was eight months old and met another mum living down the street.
She said: “We tackled the baby groups together and Mush would have been invaluable to me back then. It could have got me out the house and interacting with fellow mums much sooner.
“We need somebody else who is living it, who we can relate to and who can lighten the load, just by letting us offload. Mum friends make it better and the children can make new friends for as a bonus.”
Emma has been using Mush since giving birth to Lilah, and was invited to host the session to help promote the service to other local women.
The app, available on iOS and Android, already lists some 1,100 mums as in the area.
She added: “It has meant that I have reached out and spoken to more mums living nearby than I normally would have done. The relieved look they’ve given me to have a friendly face approach them has been so heart warming.
Emma is also making plans to give up a role with Derbyshire Police and train as a social worker from next year, determined to help even more families through hard times.
She said: “It has inspired me to launch my own group next month for mums to meet in a relaxed and friendly environment at the community room of the Tesco in Toton which I once circled aimlessly all those years ago.”
Next week’s event is being supported by Tiny Occasions Soft Play, Bunshine Biccies and Buttermilk in Sandiacre, who also hold a mum and baby coffee morning every Wednesday. To register for it, visit the event page on Facebook at http://bit.ly/2ihXiZD. For Emma’s regular group, see http://bit.ly/2gMvkRU.