That’s one of my favorite words.
Tonight I had an a-ha moment. A moment where I solved a little bit of the mystery of me. Tonight I was invited to join an acquaintance, a neighbor, out with her friends to celebrate her birthday. I was on the fence at first whether or not to go. I came up with so many excuses why it would not be a good idea to go. As the hour approached, I found myself not wanting to go. And the biggest excuse that came up was not wanting to meet new people. And the more I sniffed around this excuse, I realized there was fear wrapped around it. The fear of not knowing them, or more truthfully, Them not knowing Me.
Hiked the Great Wall of China. Kayaked in Thailand. Skinny dipped in Brazil.
Three truths and one lie.
We played that game tonight.
Just getting myself out the house tonight was an effort. When I recognized that Fear was the reason why I wanted to stay home, I had to go. Recently I find myself complaining that I don’t have “me” time, I don’t have “adult” time, I don’t have a group of “women” to hang with, blah, blah, blah, blah. Here was an opportunity for Me to get out of the house and socialize with Adult Women. So I decided Fear was not a good enough reason to stay home.
The angels placed me perfectly besides 4 women (2 of whom I met before) who graciously held space for me to be part of the group. Tammy, Kulia, Jamie and Lita. Even with my bad habit of diarrea of the mouth (I talk way too much when I’m nervous around people I don’t know), they were warm, inviting and genuinely were interested in what I had to say.
And I had such a great time. I guess I was expecting otherwise, so it was refreshing to be surprised by the ease of the company I had tonight. We met over dinner and desserts. Chit chatted about this and that. Admitted to losing track of names. Shared desserts. Swapped potty training stories. And laughed. Plenty of laughter.
And I almost missed out on all this good stuff because of fear.
But here’s what I’m learning about myself. Adventure is my comfort zone. Adventure implies a sense of not knowing and overcoming obstacles in an effort to get to a special place. Leaving one place and getting to a new and better place. Leaving home, quitting a job (multiple times), working overseas, moving across the ocean… But for the last 4 years, I’ve lived in the same apartment and the past 3 years haven’t had a job to quit. There’s been a growing internal frustration which I try to keep at bay. Sometimes I blame it on the kids, blame it on the man, blame it on living far away. But tonight I realize that the absence of adventure is gnawing at my spirit.
I’ve found that routine works for the kiddies and me. I find that we Need our daily naptime. I find that I enjoy the kids more when no one’s crying or screaming or whining. If that means the tv’s on while I cook (do laundry/wash dishes/scrub poop out of rug/etc), I serve the same foods that I know my toddler will eat over and over again, I’m a human pacifier each night to my 6 month old, it’s all good because I get some sense of peace for that moment. And so far as I see it, motherhood is a delicately stitched together fabrique of moment to moment to moment.
And I’ve been trying, many times in vain, to steer every moment away from the tantrums, crying fits or mommy meltdowns. Keep it together Keep it together. is my mantra. But in trying to keep it together, I’ve become rigid. I’ve boxed myself into imaginary boundaries. I’ve been reluctant to allow things into my world that might have me come undone. And new unknown people places things fall into that category. And I wonder why my inner me is getting restless…duh???
I’ve begun training myself to see things differently, to recognize different opportunities that may feed my soul. New can bring a sense of adventure back into my life. Tonight’s gathering was the perfect baby step outing towards embracing the Unknown. Yes, I didn’t travel over 4 miles but I did sit more than 4 people away from the woman who invited me.
My soul needs a sense of adventure and I am determined to it feed to her. And I welcome all the ways upcoming adventures may be packaged. Yes, it can even be packaged in a blog.