I am a new mom, fresh out of the box. My baby boy is only three months old, which means, as a concerned and slightly paranoid millennial parent, I’ve spent a significant amount of time Googling every conceivable topic related to newborns.
Just a sample of my search history:
“How long should my two month old be napping?”
“Activities to do with my newborn”
“Why can I hear my baby’s stomach gurgling?”
“Why is breastfeeding so hard?”
There are hundreds of others, mostly related to the health of my baby and mostly typed in a state of delirium at 2 AM. But, as he gets older and more social and I get ever closer to “cabin fever,” I’ve started to search for Mommy and Me activities and social groups in our area.
Ok, so here’s a fun activity. Do a Google search for any surrounding city with the word “Mom” after it. For example, “Santa Cruz Mom” or “Monterey Mom.” What did you find? As expected, my search brought up a whole slew of wholesome results. Whether it be articles on “How to meet new moms in Monterey” or kid-friendly museums or where to meet up with like-minded stroller-pushing fitness mommies… no surprise there, right?
Now, try searching for “Salinas Mom.” My results may have been slightly different than yours thanks to Google’s fancy algorithms, but I can safely say that there was no comparison to surrounding cities. The entire first page of my search revealed heart-breaking news stories detailing mothers accused of child abuse, mothers killed in drunk driving accidents with their newborn children, and worse if you can imagine.
I understand that a single Google search is hardly a fair representation of anything, let alone the state of an entire group of people within a city. However, after living here for several years, I find that Salinas is often more recognized for its crime rate than any other statistic. It seems a shame that a city so rich in history and so many different cultures is left to be characterized by horrifying news stories, especially when it comes to its parents.
So, I’ve decided to do something about it, even if it is only a small thing.
I refuse to believe that the mothers of Salinas have little more to offer or receive than horrifying news stories when they go to search for community on the internet. When I do a search for mothers in Salinas, I hope to one day see a list of educational and engaging places to take your toddler, mommy groups meeting for coffee, or postpartum support groups.
I refuse to believe that the mothers of Salinas have little more to offer or receive than horrifying news stories when they go to search for community on the internet.
So, this is my response. This blog is a place where motherhood (and fatherhood) in Salinas is celebrated. My posts will not only be a record of my experience as a mom in Salinas, but will also highlight local events and information that benefits parents. I will be doing my best to seek out every resource I can.
I know our city has more to offer than our crime statistics, especially when it comes to raising the next generation. My hope is that bringing light to what is already available to parents and their children in this city will cultivate interest in new groups and activities, making this city an even greater place to live.
So please, subscribe and tune in to not only hear about my own personal experiences while raising my child in Salinas, but to find ones of your own. Also, if you know of a group, activity, place or even a person that should be highlighted on this page, please feel free to contact me!