I sat in bed one night, with my two year old on one side and my newborn on the other, and the idea for mitrib was born. My mind started racing and I couldn't sleep. I texted my husband who was working downstairs.
"I have a great idea!" ...and the paranoia set in. "but I can't text it to you." I was anxious to even say it out loud. I snuck downstairs to tell him and quickly went back to bed before my little ones woke up to notice I wasn't there.
Jared and I met in Charleston, SC, where our first daughter was born. At the time, I was working full-time from home. Jared was watching her during the day, attending night classes for a second bachelor's degree, and waiting tables on the weekends. We shared one car. We barely got to spend quality time with each other, let alone try to find time to spend with anyone else.
We moved to Portland, OR in 2013. Jared started working full-time and I left my job to stay home with our daughter. We were in a new city and didn't know anyone. We had no friends, no family.
We joined Meetup groups. We joined Facebook groups. We signed up for classes. We went to storytimes and struck up friendly conversations at the park. But it still seemed so hard.
Some moms already had a clique formed -- they weren't really looking for new friends. Some families grew up in Portland -- they already had friends they had grown up with and a lineage of support. Some groups were too broad -- the kids were too much younger than ours or too old. The times didn't work. We were too busy chasing our kids to get to know the other parents. The list goes on.
Life is too hectic now to invest so much into finding out that family you finally had the guts to talk to and scheduled a playdate with are die-hard Yankees fans.
So as I sat in bed that night, I thought, why couldn't it be easy?
“ Hey, my husband and I are in our early 30s. We just moved here. We have two daughters under 4. We're vegetarians. We like exploring Portland, being outside, watching football. ”
“ Awesome! We are in our 30s and have 2 daughters under 4. We're vegetarians! We also like exploring Portland, being outside, and watching football! Let's go berry picking at an organic farm this weekend! ”
[ cue families riding off together into the sunset ]
Ok, so maybe it's not THAT easy.
But what if we could find other families near us that also want to be found?
What if we could just tell other families about ourselves and what kinds of friends we want to make?
What if we could choose the things in our life that are important to us and find families that share those interests too?
That's our goal with mitrib.
Parenting is life changing and amazing. It's selfless, messy, beautiful. And it can be lonely.
It shouldn't have to be. We need help, we need support, we need connection. It shouldn't be so hard to get there.
It takes a village. Find your tribe.
- Katie Langan, mitrib President and Co-Founder