Outside My Comfort Zone

My comfort zone is rather smallish area which I am forced to step out of more often than I’d like.

I am not a risk taker. No siree.

I don’t like to ski – I don’t like the feeling of being out of control. The first and last  attempt  was on a bunny hill in Wisconsin (which the Hubs insists isn’t proper skiing). All I remember is a lot of packed icy snow, and ending up in a heap off-slope, under the ski lift, skis akimbo and stuck in the ground.

Descending steep flights of stairs make me really, really nervous. My kids are well aware of this and when we are exploring old castles with narrow, winding, crumbling stone staircases, they know to hold Daddy’s hand and not rush me.

You will not find me parachuting, as I don’t see the point of jumping out of a perfectly good airplane.

Public speaking? I’d rather cut off my left hand – my stomach ties up in knots and my tongue doubles in size so that I stammer and stumble over my words.

That’s not to say that I don’t step out of my comfort zone, be it by force or by choice.

Motherhood has definitely taken me out of my comfort zone. Any sense of control goes right out the window when you have a newborn. The unpredictability of sleep patterns as babies, the not knowing what to do when a mysterious rash appears or when they are sick (at any age), or get into a tiff with a best friend or get picked on by a bully – all the things that some women handle with ease,  I often agonized over and second-guessed myself.

But. Motherhood has been a wondrous journey, and I cannot imagine my life without the gifts that are my children and their wonderful personalities. Motherhood has made me be more spontaneous, less of a planner, and I’m learning how to let go.

Theatre was part of my high school days, but hasn’t featured in my adult life. Last year, some of the parents from the primary school got together to put on a pantomime. Going onstage at 16 or 18 was one thing, but doing the same in front of fellow parents? Terrifying. Stepping onstage for the first time in more than twenty years was terrifying. It was also a hell of a lot of fun, and I realized how much I missed attention being onstage.

Moving overseas REALLY left me out of my comfort zone. Most of my life has been spent within a 90-mile radius of where I was born, with the exception of when I went to University – and even then, I was still in the same state. Leaving my family, my friends, my favorite haunts, Trader Joe’s and Target, proper peanut butter,  Dunkin Donuts….it was overwhelming to me at the start.  Living here, however, as been a gift – we’ve made wonderful friends, lasting memories, and had some pretty amazing opportunities and adventures that we wouldn’t have experienced living back in the US.

Most importantly, I learned that I could survive.

When we eventually return to the US, I hope that I can look at the move back with an open mind and see the opportunity that it offers and not just the things that we leave behind.

I know I need to step outside my comfort zone more often.

But you still can’t convince me to jump out of an airplane. I’ll meet you on the ground.

Mama’s Losin’ It


  1. I’m in your same “zone”, except I’ve learned to really enjoy public speaking. The only way I’ll be jumping out of a plane is if I was strapped on to someone — kicking and screaming all the way. Never gonna happen! Life is a wonderful adventure just waiting. Going overseas would be scary, especially if it meant an adjustment in food.

    visiting from mama kats

  2. For someone who doesn’t like to step out of her comfort zone, you got on a plane and quite literally, left it in the dust. So glad it worked out so well. We are just about to move to Texas, a state I never thought I’d live in. Luckily, going there means a return to Dunkin’ Donuts as our current state does not have any! Very difficult for two Northeasterners to swallow.

    • Texas? That will be a change, but it’s still exciting. Think of how big your hair is going to get!! I’ll send you a teasing comb and Aqua Net…
      (but I will not mock as karma is a bitch, and I know the company my husband works for has businesses in Texas too…and you can never be too sure what twists lie ahead!!!!

      • It was scary but every time I started to get overwhelmed I’d think of my friend Ann, whoever to Germany with her family about three months before me…they all needed to learn German! At least we nearly spearmint the same language here (say it with me: ah-LOo-min-um – never in a million years will I say
        ahl-oo-MIN-ee-um, no matter how much they mock me!!!!)

        Can u teach me to love public speaking?

  3. We still talk about that ski trip. I know it was at your expense but I’m not sure I have ever laughed so much in my life! And you only feel out of control until you get the hang of skiing then you are in control. We should go skiing again but this time in Colorado where they have real ski hills and it is actually easier to learn.

    Jumping out of a plane is also very fun and exhilarating…you’re looking at from the wrong perspective. Although now that I have 3 kids I’m not so quick to jump out of a perfectly good plane.

    Even though I can be more of a risk taker than you I’m not sure I could have done what you have done and moved across an ocean from my friends and family and thrived and embraced it like you have. Joe and I want to come visit before you move back so you will have to help me figure out when…even if it means pulling the kids out of school for a week.

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