Hi, I’m Charlene and I am twenty years old. I have a super happy-go-lucky one year old son named Caeden. I started Thrive in September along with five other amazing moms and their children.
Thrive to me is a support network in the form of a program. Thrive helps young moms like myself find their dreams and goals for the future and figure out ways to accomplish them. Thrive is a way for us moms to form connections with each other and make new friends. I came to Thrive without knowing a lot about myself or knowing how to handle emotions in my everyday life. Before Thrive, I was constantly struggling to be the best mom I could be for my son. I have learned so much about myself at Thrive and continue to learn more about myself and those around me each day.
I was uncertain what Thrive would be like when I first went. I started off quite anxious and scared, however, it’s now become a really safe, caring and loving place for me. I love to go there. My son absolutely loves the childcare staff and they are amazing with him and really open with us as mothers which I love.
This week during Thrive I learned a lot about myself not just as a mom but as my own person. I learned that’s its okay to trust and be open with those around me. I learned that not everyone in my life will judge me for my past mistakes or the ones I may make in the future before they happen. I have learned so many useful strategies that help me with mindfulness when I feel like I am struggling. Before Thrive, I use to be one of those people who are constantly on their phone or checking it, but the past week I was taught a valuable lesson about being on my phone too much and the impact it will have on my son. I have been able to cut my phone time down which I never thought I would do. Now that I am no longer on my phone a lot I have so many great moments with Caeden.
My highlight of the week is lunch time with the other moms and their kids. I love how we have conversations and laugh with each other instead of having an awkward silence. We even talk to each other’s children and make faces with the babies. We trust each other with our children. If someone has to run and grab something, someone else will watch the child and sometimes convince them to eat their food. I miss some parts of lunch when I put my son down for his nap but I don’t feel weird that I missed part of the conversation because we are all friends and the conversation will possibly get laughed about upstairs. We all have a very good understanding of my son and the other kid’s needing a nap. I think this is important for us because it frees us to miss lunch to put our kids down for a nap without feeling like we are not part of the group.
Thank you for helping us create such good connections with each other and supporting us through this journey.