I did something new today. It was a little out of character for me, I must say. Even The Dude was surprised when I mentioned to him last night what I had planned to do. That I was going to take Bugs in the car and meet up with my Natural Parenting playgroup in Hawthorn.
It probably doesn’t sound like much but to me, that felt equivalent to scaling Everest without any mountain climbing experience. Being a first time parent makes me naturally nervous about trying anything new. My mind goes into overdrive (over)thinking about a zillion things- how will Bugs react? Would she like the car ride? Ive never been to Hawthorn -would I be able to find my way there? (oh I can go on and on here….). What usually happens is that the fear of the unknown grips over me and I end up talking myself out of it.
Somehow, this time round, it was different. I went through my usual thought process and felt the fear start to creep up on me. But the longing to meet new people (staying at home can be isolating at times) and to experience a change of surroundings just for an hour or two was much stronger. So the night before, I mustered up every ounce of courage in me that I could find and convinced myself that i had to make my way there the next day.
When morning came, I was still apprehensive but finally decided, with The Dude’s encouragement, to go ahead as planned. I hurried off to the local supermarket and got a couple of boxes of cookies to share for morning tea, while The Dude helped strap Bugs into the car seat. Before we drove off, The Dude gave Bugs a kiss on her forehead and said “See you later baby girl! Have fun and tell Mommy it’ll be fine!”.
Bugs was calm and happy throughout the car ride. We arrived at the meeting place (which was a maternal and child health centre in a previous life) forty minutes later and were very warmly welcomed by the mothers and their kids in the playgroup.
“The drive was ok,” I thought to myself as I sat Bugs down on the floor and watched her play intently with some building blocks. , “Bugs is enjoying herself, that’s a surprise!” I started to feel the warm sensation of relief rushing through my body.Gradually, as the minutes passed, I felt more relaxed and found myself chatting and enjoying the conversation around the room.
The session ended with a lovely cake cutting ceremony in the backyard. The centre is now the permanent ‘home’ of the playgroup and today was the first time everyone met there, so a celebration was definitely in order. It was really cute to see the kids holding out their hands for cake!
It was a big step outside of my comfort zone but I was immensely glad that I did it! I had met lovely and friendly new people, given Bugs a brand new experience, gained more confidence, had fun and got to eat delicious homemade cake, all in one morning! Trying something new is not that bad a thing after all!