Nicole’s Fearless Friday

Hooray! We’re happy to share our second Fearless Friday post. This one is from reader Nicole Wiltrout, stay-at-home mom and blogger living in Columbus, Indiana. Nicole blogs about adventures at home and away with her husband and 17-month-old son at arrowssentforth.blogspot.com and tweets at @arrowssentforth.

There were many moments in my first year as a mom when I forced myself out of my parenting comfort zone. My first solo trip out of the house with baby, a trip to the art museum on a rainy day when I just couldn’t handle one more hour in my house, and our first meal as a family of three in a restaurant all come to mind. But one moment stands out in particular, both for the emotional roller coaster it was, and for the subsequent change it had on my life as a mom.

I had been itching to get back into a workout routine beyond pushing a stroller on walks around the neighborhood, and so I found a gym with childcare and signed myself up. But it really hadn’t occurred to me that it would require handing over my son to a total stranger in a strange place until that next morning. I started to get really nervous. But I forced myself to pack a gym bag. I still felt nervous. I forced myself to get in the car. I was crazy nervous. I circled the parking lot. I felt nauseous. I distinctly remember turning off the car, putting both hands on the steering wheel, and giving myself a pep talk. “This will be good for you. It will be good for him. It will make you a better mom. It will make him a more independent kid.” All things I wanted for myself and my son.

So then I forced myself to walk into the gym and up the stairs to the daycare. One of the longest walks in my life. And yes, he shed a few tears when I handed him over. The woman who runs the daycare was kind and gentle, and assured me he would be just fine. And now? That woman (Miss Kerry) has become one of his favorites—his eyes light up and he squeals whenever I mention her name. He reaches for her the minute we walk into the gym each morning. She spoils him rotten and showers him with attention. There’s nothing better than watching someone love your kid.

And more importantly, it really has made me a better mom. I feel better about myself. I’m more active. I have more energy. I’m hoping to run my first 5K in a few weeks. All because I forced myself, one step at a time, to face my fears.

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Run, Nicole, Run!
This post is part of Fearless Fridays, a series sponsored by method (which was founded in 2000, in the dirtiest apartment in san francisco). join the people against dirty™ on facebook.com/method.

(Send in your own; instructions are here.)

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RookieMoms co-founder & mom to 3 boys in Berkeley, CA. Bossy big sister and project manager turned blogger helping moms enjoy their first years of motherhood. Find me on my other site on 510families.com or hiding in my minivan eating dark chocolate.

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