Sep 20, 2005

The Comfort Zone

The most recent post on Mom in the Mirror about yay-sayers and nay-sayers reminded me of a book I read when I had just graduated from high school called Life 101. There's a concept in it called "The Comfort Zone," and the basic premise of the book is that one must continually seek to expand one's comfort zone in order to be happy.

I've generally found that premise to be true, and have tried to live according to it my entire adult life. It would seem, though, that nothing can expand my comfort zone quite like having my first child. I was thinking about this the other day - ever since Alex was born, I've been constantly doing new things and meeting new people, all because of him.

It started with the support group run by my lactation consultant, Ellen Steinberg. I wasn't comfortable leaving the house alone with Alex to drive 20 minutes to her house, but I did it because I needed to hear the stories of the other women there and know that I wasn't alone. (This was back when (1) I was still terrified of this cute but unpredictable creature who had completely turned my life upside down and inside out, and (2) Alex would wail loudly and inconsolably in the car for the duration of the trip.)

I became friends with the women in Ellen's group and we started getting together on our own. When I was too afraid to drive with Alex to a couple of our outings, sweet Arlene picked us up and took us with her. Since then, Alex has learned to fall asleep in the car, and I have gotten used to driving to new places. I've also gotten used to meeting new people, something that's never been very easy for me. I'm even taking a Kindermusik class with Alex, all because I believe it's good for his development.

And then there was this blog. I barely knew what a web log was when Alex was born, but this blog has turned into my favorite "me" activity. I've always wanted to share all of the things I've learned throughout the years, and this is the perfect way for me to do that. And who knew I'd be able to master some rudimentary html?

I've done more in the six months since Alex was born to expand my comfort zone than I did during the preceding two years, when I focused my energy on starting a family. I have a feeling that this little boy has only begun to change my life - and me! - for the better.


Anonymous said...

Really liked reading this entry. I am going to check out the book - I definitely could get better at getting out of my comfort zone.

So glad to read about how happy you are about making all that progress on meeting new people, trying new things. Great going!

ChiefFamilyOfficer said...

Thank you so much! When I write a post that's mostly about me, I'm always a bit uncertain about how it's going to go over, so I really appreciate the feedback :)

Life 101 is a good book - my favorite parts are the quotes - but I'd also really recommend a book by Cheryl Richardson called Take Time For Yourself. I thought it was great for prioritizing and coming up with ways to do the important things. Good luck!