Parenting groups are not hard to find if you’re seeking a particular interest- moms of newborns, baby-wearing, food allergies, and even places to sell used baby items are niches easily found. But what if you want an all-encompassing group about motherhood? Mindful Moms of Lexington wants to be that group.
Mindful Moms began last September after a group of mothers realized they had questions that couldn’t be answered in one place. Andrea Malji, one of the founders, said she and two other moms were attending the Bluegrass Babywearers group but decided to start a Facebook group that had more of a broad scope.
“The questions may not always fit in with mainstream mothering boards,” said Malji, who is an adjunct professor of political science at Transylvania University and mother to a 2-year-old son. ““It’s not that cookie cutter idea, of the crunchy mom. We are more than welcoming to everybody.”
The Mindful Mom administrators started hosting monthly meetings at the public library, but as membership grew, they moved to Baby Moon on Richmond Road. Meetings are baby-friendly, and each has a topic the group can discuss.
“Recently we had a demonstration about mineral make-up which tied into a discussion on how can we as moms care for ourselves,” Malji said.
Carrie Murtha, mom to 20-month-old Rosie, heard about Mindful Moms while attending Hens and Chicks, a local group open to new moms with babies up to 4 months old. She was curious about the group, and discovered the wide range of ideaologies represented.
“It’s a wonderful source of support and a great way to meet other moms,” she said. “We can feel isolated and struggle to find other moms to hang out with and cultivate friendships. I joined for support and advice on everything from breastfeeding to cloth diapers and illnesses.”
The meetings are open to drop-ins, but the accompanying Facebook group is closed and members must be approved. The group also has a buy, sell, trade page limited to members only. Malji said 5 administrators monitor the pages to make sure everyone stays respectful in discussions.
Posts online range from breastfeeding issues, questions about newborns, or simply a recommendation for a family-friendly restaurant in town. The group has more than 1,200 members as of March.
“The Facebook group is a huge wealth of information,” Murtha said. “Anytime you have a problem or question you are guaranteed to get some wonderful answers.”
Malji hopes the group can grow in the area of community service. Past service projects the group has done include making meals at the Ronald McDonald house, and hosting a community baby shower for moms in need.
Keeping the group a welcoming environment is also a priority.
“We want to continue making people feel comfortable and work on nurturing that big village where we can support each other even if we don’t agree,” Malji said.
If You Go:
What: Mindful Moms of Lexington Monthly Meeting
When: First Saturday of each month, 11:30 a.m.
Where: Baby Moon, 2891 Richmond Rd.
Info: Mindful Moms on Facebook