What MOPS Gave Me

I first heard of MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers) when my oldest was between 7-10 months old. We were at our very first ever play date, a monthly get together set up by a mom in our church. I had no concept of MOPS, or even play dates, I was still so new to motherhood. All I knew is that I craved friendship and connection with other moms. 

MOPS is a great way to disconnect from the chaos that motherhood can bring and to connect with moms just like yourself. 

I was told that at MOPS you eat brunch, talk with other moms at your table, and make a craft while someone else watches your child or children for two hours. That sounded like a win all around!

Several months later, I went to a MOPS meeting for the first time, 

and it was a “so-so” experience. As in, I was so nervous, and so late! I was pregnant at the time, and my oldest son had only ever gone to childcare at our home church. His reaction to an unfamiliar place, and me getting lost around the church’s campus just added to my nerves. Once I got settled at a table, all I could think was, “Wow, these moms are so cool, and so put together! How do I measure up?”

Overall, I enjoyed being around other moms, and wanted to go back,

but I didn’t know they followed a school schedule, and I went to a meeting in late April! So I stopped pursuing any moms groups until that Fall when the Vineyard Church (our home church at the time) started their own MOPS group. 

While I was still awkward and nervous at first, it wasn’t as frightening since I knew my way around the church. 

Honestly, I didn’t know just how good MOPS was for me until recently.

I always knew that I enjoyed going and I loved telling other moms about it, and as I reflected on my life over the past two years, I realized how much MOPS  gave me. 

My first Vineyard MOPS meeting, my table was discussing hobbies,

and as I spoke and tried to defend myself and desire to write fiction, another mom said “That sounds totally awesome, even if it were romantic fiction, it would still be cool.” While I took her words to heart, I didn’t know how amazing her nonjudgmental response has been in my motherhood journey. This nonjudgmental, come as you are attitude permeates MOPS. 

We’re a group of moms who laugh, cry, and get really excited when someone brings homemade cinnamon rolls for brunch. It is such an authentic and diverse group of moms, and one that I treasure. 

Vineyard MOPS 

  • 16761 Tiger Bend Rd, Baton Rouge
  • 1st and 3rd Wednesday of the month (during the school year)
  • Cost is $8 per meeting (to help with childcare)
  • New to MOPS? First meeting is free!
  • Brunch items are brought by tables on a rotation schedule
  • There is coffee!

Istrouma MOPS

  • 10500 Sam Rushing Dr, Baton Rouge, LA
  • 2nd and 4th Wednesday of the month (during the school year)
  • Cost is $2 per meeting
  • New to MOPS? First meeting is free!
Victoria grew up in a military family, and spent her last two years of high school in Fort Polk, LA. She promised to leave Louisiana as soon as she graduated, but after touring LSU she felt that Baton Rouge wasn’t too bad, and stayed! While attending LSU for her bachelor’s degree in English, she met her incredible husband, Jeff. Together they have two wonderful boys, James (3) and Asher (1). Now, she’s proud to call Baton Rouge home, and has experience connecting with other moms through the local ICAN (International Cesarean Awareness) and Mothers of Preschoolers groups. She’s convinced that some of the best people in the world live in Baton Rouge, and loves raising her boys here. She loves to bake, especially vegan and paleo recipes! She’s a Chick Fil-a addict, and a lover of books and gardens! Both of her boys are full of life! James is a social butterfly who loves to sing worship songs all day, every day! Asher is a cuddle bug with a heart of gold, who has to do everything James does! When Asher was only 1 day old he was diagnosed with craniosynostosis (a condition where the plates in his skull fused prematurely). He had major surgery to repair the fused sagittal suture at 3 months old. He had helmet therapy for 11 months, and was the cutest “helmet baby.” Now, 7 months later, he’s a totally normal, very active toddler.

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