'In the grips of post-natal depression I came away empowered' - Dereham mum on how parents can enjoy a healthy social life
PUBLISHED: 00:25 07 February 2018 | UPDATED: 00:25 07 February 2018
In her latest column Dereham resident VICKI COCKERILL reports on an organisation which helps parents get out and enjoy a social life...
You know the drill by now, you see that your favourite blogger or Instagram celebrity is going on tour or holding an event, you scan the list and yet again they are coming nowhere near you.
The old age game of weighing up travelling costs, or the FOMO (fear of missing out) feeling when you see everyone begin to upload their photos and #OUTOUT whilst you sit in your pyjamas eating a packet of hobnobs in bed at 8pm.
As a parent it can be hard to find the time to get out, as it isn’t just as simple as getting a ticket, booking travel or an overnight stay anymore. There is childcare, fear of the evitable hangover and the fact you spent most of your money on the Nutmeg Sale last week. Then finding a fellow parent to accompany you? Well you have just doubled the dilemma.
It turns out being a parent can be lonely, and you can find yourself drifting away from childless friends, being forgotten about by work colleagues whilst on maternity leave or just worried about going out with the baby/ kids in tow so it is easier to hide yourself away. Yes, there are local baby and toddler groups but when you feel like you really don’t know what you are doing, despise wind the bobbin up and just want a gin and to speak to actual adults about the real world, they are not the best fit for many.
However, Norfolk parents have no fear, we have a saviour in the form of Emma Victor-Smith who has set up the parent event company We Got This (Sometimes)? Right on our doorstep. Yes, in Norfolk! Her vision was to set up events that would help the flagging parent by bringing the inspiring, funny and popular social media guest speakers to Norwich who wouldn’t have otherwise. Inspired by the fact she could not get to the events she saw online she decided to make it her mission to bring them to us. And boy, has she delivered.
It gives us space we all crave when parentdom becomes a minefield and you need to spend some time with some like-minded people to get a sense of normality or some tips in how to make parenting that little bit easier. Emma aims to spread the word and ‘reach parents who would like to come to specially tailored events and workshops. Those who want to be inspired, encouraged, entertained and high-fived, while spending time with like-minded people in Norfolk’.
In a short time, Emma has created two sold out events, and hosted a very successful day event which I was lucky enough to go to. Katie Kirby aka Hurrah for Gin, Busting the Supermum Myth author Anya Hayes have all travelled down to guest speak to packed out audiences of excited Norfolk Mums (me included). Next is the turn of the infamous Scummy Mummies Show on the 31st January which has proved to be so popular that it has already sold out, with more dates added! It is safe to say We Got This (sometimes)? have the recipe for success and others from around the country have launched their own franchises, Jane in Belfast and two Twickenham Mums Lydia and Sophie are all busy planning and hosting events after feeling they too were lacking these events in their own home town.
I have always had to travel down to London to attend these type of events, but on Friday 19th January I went to St Giles Hotel with a fellow columnist Sally White to attend the second We Got This (sometimes)? first day time event. Located upstairs in the lavish surroundings we were met with mums with babes in arms, a relaxed chatty atmosphere and coffee on tap! Emma is a wonderful host and her future vision to host more events, bring more names and bring more parent brands to us here is one I am very excited to see develop. I can honestly see what benefit this will be locally to many mums who otherwise would likely not connect in a like-minded and safe space or be given the opportunity to just get out and laugh.
We Got This (sometimes)? donate to the local charity Get Me Out of These Four Walls who help mums get out, talk, walk and just get out of the house and feel better. What I am not sure if Emma knows is that her event did that for me, after not being out properly for seven months since my second son was born, and in the grips of post-natal depression and anxiety I came away feeling empowered, understood and inspired and cannot wait to attend the next one.
Already featured on BBC Norfolk, Metro and EDP and two future events in the pipeline, I think Norfolk, we now most certainly Got This (sometimes).
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