I’m a home body, really. I love my house. I love hanging out here, inside or out. It’s comfortable, and where my beautiful little family is. I find it relaxing (mostly), and well, it’s HOME. I guess I needn’t say more.
Tonight I’m stepping out. That course that I was going to do, and then said that I wasn’t going to do, and then changed my mind about and am now doing, starts tonight. Over the last week I’ve changed my mind a fair few times, but ultimately, I want to do it, they want me to do it, my husband wants me to do it (and has denied all my attempts to weasel my way out of it – I love that man!) and there is no pressure to continue the training straight away – I can do the course so that it’s under my belt, and then start volunteering when I’m ready. So I have nothing to lose.
Except that I’m nervous. And fighting off all anxious thoughts about it. It’ll be the first time my husband has had solo care of the three kids in an evening. Ever. It’s a pretty big step. He’ll be alone (at their mercy) for almost four hours. FOUR HOURS. I don’t think I’ve left the house for that long since I had Natalie. In fact, I don’t even think I was away from the other two for even four hours when I had Natalie… and certainly not any time before that, when Lauren was small. I have complete faith that he will do just fine, but it’s hard for me to hand over the reigns.
I’ve been carrying one baby, or two, on my hip/s for years now. Little arms around my body, warm breath on my cheek or chest, precious faces within kissing distance. They act as a kind of safety barrier for the world. Insulation. There is ALWAYS something to talk about when you have a child on your hip. People don’t generally approach you unless they like kids, and if you find yourself struggling to think of things to say, babies are always happy to provide entertainment. It takes the pressure off me.
I know I’m interesting. I am sure I have stuff to say. Intelligent stuff. Stuff people will want to talk to me about. But I have to confess to feeling a little naked without a child in my arms. A little vulnerable.
So tonight, I’m stepping outside my comfort zones. I’ll meet people I’ve never met before, learn things I’ve been distant from for years now. I’ll return to a household that on some levels seems exactly the same but will be slightly different. I know this is good for everyone, but I can’t help but feel a little sad about the subtle changes that this will create. All positive ones. Really positive ones. It’s time. That doesn’t mean I can’t feel a little emotional about it.
The first steps are the hardest. The most challenging. But ultimately, worth taking.