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Harker Heights Evening Star
Harker Heights Evening Star

Play Date

Play Date

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by
Jonathan Oliver

After months of trying to find a stay at home dad group I finally started reaching out to stay at home mom groups in the Tulsa/Owasso area. Must to our delight we were allowed to join both a stay at home mom group in Owasso and a stay at home mom group in Tulsa.
So today journey attended her first play date in the park with the Tulsa stay at home mom group. It was about a 30 minute drive away from our home and that’s one of the great things about moving from Texas anything under two hour drive is considered a skip. I found myself having anxiety as I begin to get journey ready for a play date. I don’t know where these feelings came from but I want to journey to be accepted. I noticed that I was putting expectations on myself like I didn’t want to be late or not have the things that she possibly may need for a play date and come across looking incompetent as a stay at home dad.
Lucky for me journey woke up from her nap about an hour before was time for us to head out the door. So she was able to get her second bottle of the morning and a package of vegetable. I begin to list thing that she will possibly may need for this play day after all how long does a play day last. I packed her stroller, a blanket, some snacks, a little baby plastic bowl for her snacks, a bib, extra diapers, and extra change of clothes. What does a 10 month old little angle name journey wear on a could overcast day at the park with a possible slight chance of rain and still a chance for the sun to pop out. A white sundress of course.
God has placed in my life many men that I can be very honest and candid. I spoke with one of my mentors as I drove to the play date and I told him about my anxiety and needing to just let go and be in the moment. He advised me that feelings are just feelings nothing more or nothing less, and not to allow them to sabotage myself from enjoying the moment and to be gentle with myself (it’s funny how my junk if not handle and accept in a healthy way can rob me of my joy in the journey).
As we parked the truck and got everything I place journeys sun hat on her had and we began our stroll into the park. I had to shut my brain off from all the stereotypes I had seen in movies about stay at home mom groups, about the hierarchy and judging of others. After all the objective is to introduce my daughter to the ability to connect with other children in a social setting. Not people pleasing or comparing because nothing good ever comes from those experiences; just envy, jealous, and self-doubt.
I approached the area that looked like a common meeting spot for most of the moms. It was a wooden ship that had plastic slides connected to it and children were enjoy themselves and laughing. I introduced journey and myself to several of the moms. A place journey on the ground and we both stood beside one another. Journey took a card out of her mom’s DNA which is to assess a situation before joining in. As I exchange conversations with the other moms journey begin to loosen up and relax. Before long she was just another kid the park with her dad. Out of the 15 or so kids journey was the second youngest and the oldest kid was getting ready to join preschool the next day.
Within minutes I felt completely welcome. I begin to get a ton of information about different ways to stay connected to the group. From other play dates to when the story times will be starting in the fall to what websites to learning about more up coming events. All of the moms was very engaging. It didn’t hurt that my daughter look absolutely gorgeous and her behavior was amazing so she may my job look a lot easier. I repeatedly thank all the moms for being so nice and welcoming. I also told them don’t be surprise if you see us about once a week. I’m happy because as the fall approaches I have an few new things to put on my calendar to help journey continue to grow and develop.
Jonathan Oliver is an experienced motivational speaker, life coach, and author. He is the CEO of his company Higher Enlightenment which strives to create a world of truth, love, and faith. He was born and raised in Texas and now lives with his wife and their first child Journey in Owasso, OK. He is a first time stay at home dad. His contact information is on www.higherenlightenment.com and follow him on facebook.

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