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Challenge: WHO Are You?

Trying Something New

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Wanna know what happened when I told my friend I was leaving my family to spend a few days investing in myself at a conference? She burst into tears. She wasn’t sad or mad. Though she might have been both if she'd heard the threats and bribes that made my trip possible. instead, she was proud of me for taking time for myself to do something I wanted to do. This is what happens when you’ve been a stay-at-home parent for a while. You stop remembering to do things for yourself. Well, that and also colonoscopies start to seem like mini vacations.

I am, without a doubt, the most boring person at any cocktail party. I am the last stop when you've got just one more sip left in your martini glass and you know you have to say hello but you also need an out for when I start in on a story about the “funniest thing” that happened during library duty and you can smile with fake rue, ask me if I need anything and then make a break for the bar aaaallll the way across the room.

Usually, I am a wife, sister, daughter, friend, school volunteer, minivan driver, yada yada yada. I am the mom who reliably shows up to the parent meetings at the high school, who signs up first to chaperone the field trip (class mom perk, y’all!), who agrees to bake something for the bake sale and then actually pulls out her cupcake tins instead of her Stop and Shop coupons.

Today, I am not that person. Today, I am a writer, innovator, entrepreneur, student, dreamer, thinker. Today, the numbers and ages of my children will be the third or fourth question I am asked by new acquaintances, if it comes up at all. No one will care all that much that my superpower is tricking my kids into believing there aren’t onions in any food ever. Instead, I will have an opinion and ideas and it will be assumed that I have a brain. Like a good one that works for more than remembering the names of all the kids in my daughter's 2nd grade. I am the person who might just keep you from your rendez-vous with the bartender. So top up before you come find me.

Today, I have given myself permission to put myself in the center of my story. After a lifetime lived mostly on the sidelines, I have given myself permission to get in the game. I have chosen to listen to the people outside my head who are saying, “You can” instead of the voice inside my head that says, “Nope”.

Today I am also the person who did yoga for the first time in sixteen years. Which my tomorrow self may not thank me for. But the person I am today is a person who will try something new and uncomfortable. And she is a person who, when asked by the impossibly adorable yoga instructor to set an intention while doing this new and uncomfortable thing wishes for the bravery to have more experiences just like it. Today, and every day, I am the person who wishes that for you too.

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