Friday, January 13, 2012

Our PEPS Group

So, last night, we had our last "official" PEPS (Program for Early Parent Support) meeting, a journey that started with a meeting of strangers back in September. For those that don't know, and I had no idea what it was when I was dragged to the first meeting, PEPS is kind of like for new parents (sort of at least).

When we first signed up, Kim told me we were joining a group of parents that will meet every Thursday night. I didn't know what to really expect, but I trusted my wife and was open to anything that would help us learn about becoming better parents. Little did I know how much fun, and how educational, this process has been.

I don't remember the exact date, but I remember walking into a strangers house and all of a sudden you were sharing some very personal stuff with them. It didn't take long to start laughing with each other and realize, these people were in exactly the same boat you were, and a bond was formed. From Mike's funny jokes, to Crystal's humor, to the leadership of Sarah, and of course the idea by myself to introduce some adult cocktails into the meetings, Thursday night's all of a sudden became a night I looked forward to.

I'll never forget when we first started going to the meetings, Kim told me a story about one of her co-workers. The co-worker and her husband had a long day, and they too were in a PEPS group. They had  long day of work and were on their way to a meeting, with a crying baby, and the Mom suggested they just call it a night and not attend the meeting. The Dad said, no way, we are making this meeting! At the time, I kind of laughed at the story, but three months later, I found myself in the same shoes. We were on our way to the last "official" meeting, Charlie was whaling in the back seat, and Kim suggested we just turn around. I was hell-bent on making the meeting, convincing myself once we got there Charlie would see his buddies Emerson, Mason, Jared, Ella, Lucy, Avery and Clark, and he would be back to normal. And I knew once I saw our friends, everything would be better.

It is funny how one group can make a difference. I've been able to learn from other Dads, learn how amazing Mom's truly are in all different capacities and be able to share so many great memories in a short period of time. We've shared stories about kids not sleeping, rashes, teething, and just about everything else. Heck, we even had a fun time sharing how all the parents met and proposed! And the great thing is, we'll continue to spend time together as a group. We've already formed a plan meet bi-monthly, and I assume we'll see each other even more than that. I have images in my mind of many birthday's in the future spending time with these kids and families, and that warms my heart.

And there is the best part of all. The group is pretty much running a half-marathon together. My most recent count has 8 of the adults running the Portland Half-Marathon in October. We (hopefully) plan on renting a house for a few nights and running the race together.

It has been an awesome experience becoming a Dad, seeing Charlie grow nearly everyday and just having the feeling of being in a Family, but being part of this group has made things even better. So, thanks to all of you guys/gals, and we look forward to many great times in the future!

The PEPS Group

1 comment:

  1. So well put! I feel so lucky to be a part of this group where we cherish each and every single person in the group. It's rare that you put 16 people and 8 babies together and you like ALL of them. And we're so happy to have Charlie leading the pack. :)