A New Chapter Has Started For Us

Hi all,

So, it’s been a while since I have posted something substantial because I have been so busy at work. We have been having system issues and other things. We deal with people’s medication, so I have been staying late a few nights a week to make sure we get these people their medication. That’s the great thing about this job. I don’t really care for being on the phones, and I’m not as much as I used to be. I’m a senior now, so I talk to the grumpy, the sick, the frustrated elderly. I answer questions from our representatives and coach when necessary.

Well, dear readers, I am here to announce that I have been given the opportunity to go a step higher. I am going to be interim supervisor starting today. This is pretty big news for me! I applied for a supervisor position about a month ago and I nailed the interview, I just didn’t have the ‘experience’ they were looking for. This interim position will give me the experience I want and need for the next step in this path.

I’m kind of the glue that holds my current team together in a lot of ways, so I am concerned that I am leaving them hanging, so on the work front, I’m feeling a tiny bit guilty just ‘abandoning’ them. However, they have an excellent supervisor and my backup senior is pretty sharp and knowledgable, he just has to have the confidence to do the job!

On the home front, I’m even more guilty. My shift will change now from 8-5PM to 3-Midnight. Which really means that I will be missing the bedtime routine. I do so love putting Punky to bed. So, I’m sure not only do I need to get my own bedtime routine and sleep schedule changed, but I will be wondering what she’s doing around 8PM every night when she usually goes to bed.

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We spent last night watching the Giggle Bellies before bed. Just laying in mommies’ bed and cuddling!

The upside to this is that I get to spend time with her in the day time. I get to take her out and do things with her. The mommy group that I am a member of usually does playdates during the day and I was always bummed that I couldn’t take her to those things. We only had time to do things at night (when I was usually too darn tired) or on the weekends (when I really didn’t want to get out of the house).

Now, we can do all sorts of things. In fact, we have been booked for three playdates this week.

On Thursday, Punky and I are going to a free FitMom class in the morning. I hear it’s a great workout for moms who don’t have time or daycare to get to the gym. I’m looking forward to that. I have been counting calories for about a month now and started doing Jillian Michael’s 30 day shred level 1 workout consistently for the last week. I’ve lost about 8.5 pounds in the last month. It’s pretty exciting and I’m pretty happy with this new chapter in my life too!

On Friday, we are going to Xtreme Fitness to play at the Toddler Time. I’ve been told that this place has all sorts of fun things for kids to play with. Trampolines and foam pits and just a nice place to run off the energy of a toddler.

Yesterday we visited the open house at Gymboree for a couple hours. I really miss taking her to Gymboree. I sure wish she liked participating in the classes more!

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It’s so important to me to spend time with Punky while I am still working. I am a working mom. I am a working mom for a reason. I can’t possibly stay at home with her 24/7 and keep my sanity. But, I want that bond with her. I want to be close with her and I am hoping being able to have that bond with her and be a mom she can come to when she needs something.

So, with a new job and a new schedule and a new weight loss plan, things are looking new and different, but hopefully a great new life is starting!

Take care.

Parenting with Social Anxiety

We are officially a Gymboree mommy and baby. We went to open gym yesterday and Punky had more fun. She was able to crawl around and cruise on all the different ramps and mats. She was able to get out of her shell and play. I just let her explore the gym and she one minute I am talking to another mom and the next, I look back and Punky is WALKING.

She just took off. I was so surprised. She didn’t get very far before she fell over, but I cheered for her and told her out great it was and she just smiled and crawled back to where she started.

This struck up a few conversations with some of the other moms in the gym.

This is where things got sticky, in my head. I have a self-diagnosed social anxiety, a quirk really. I haven’t been officially diagnosed, but I know myself well enough to know that when I am in a public situation, with people I don’t know, I start to panic. My heart starts to race and I start to clam up. I do take a small dose of anxiety medication, but really I don’t see a therapist for it. It’s just something that I live with and deal with.

However, in that moment, I had to reason with myself that I had already taken myself out of my house, to go somewhere other than work or Walmart. I went to a social situation and I brought Punky with me. If I was already here, and it was the second time, that I just needed to relax and let Punky have fun. Let myself have fun.

So we started talking. Usually, once I get to know people, I am pretty much alright. I just have to get to that point. I have to get out of my house and I have to make myself not to make excuses or re-schedule the events. When I learned about Gymboree, I made an effort to go because I wanted to allow Punky the opportunity to socialize. So, that’s the first step.

I have paid the fee and set up a commitment for the the next two months to attend 1 class a week. I reason with myself that I can’t waste my money with reschedules and excuses that don’t really exist.

Once we started talking, one of the moms invited me to their mommy group. They have play dates and mommy date nights, nights out. I was flattered that this woman was inviting me, and she seemed nice enough for sure!  The problem is me.

We are not the most conventional of parents. We are parenting without religion, we are parenting without gender roles, we are parenting as a lesbian couple. I don’t know these women well enough to know if they would be alright with these things. I don’t want to be the whispered about mom either. I mean, I am sure these women are nice and in the back of my mind, I know my fears are irrational.

I don’t really have mommy friends outside of work. I think it would be awesome. I want, so badly, to get out of my shell and do this. Not just for Punky, but for myself. I have taken the first step and asked to join the Facebook group. I will try and get to know these women in a Gymboree and Facebook atmosphere.

I don’t know these women and they don’t know me. Maybe once I feel them out in a public setting, I might get around to stepping out and actually meeting them at their houses or in a more intimate setting.

Like everything else, this is something I hope to work on this year. I want to get out and do things. I want to take Punky places, I want her to experience things and I don’t want my anxiety to limit the things she is able to do!

Our Trip to Gymboree

Punky and I spend Saturdays together. She and I usually leave the house in the afternoon and give her Mama time to sleep in and take a break. Mama stays home with Punky while I go to work because her Bipolar disorder doesn’t allow her to work right now. It makes for a great financial situation that we don’t have to employ daycare, however, it makes me nervous about Punky’s socialization.

She will be a year old in just a few short weeks. She doesn’t really get to be around other kids her age. I have the car at work all day, of course, even if I didn’t, my partner also suffers from agoraphobia and other things that limit her ability to leave the house alone.

I also don’t really have mommy friends. I don’t really have many friends in person at all. We pretty much stay to ourselves. I also have a slight problem with going places by myself in public situations where there may or may not be people I don’t know.

So, all in all, the kid has the unfortunate pleasure of being home bound most of the time.

When I saw the opportunity to attend a free Gymboree session, I thought I might as well get over my fear of strangers and take Punky out to get some socialization. This is a huge change for me since becoming a mother. I honestly have to make myself get out and mingle with other people.

So, we arrived at Gymboree, I didn’t talk myself out of it or reschedule it like I normally would have done with an outing like this. And, all in all we had a nice time.

The instructor explained that each week there would be a new theme. The theme this week was ramps and rhymes. So, we were teaching the kids to climb up ramps and slide down slides. There were all sorts of mats and tumbling things for the kids to crawl on and play on. There were colorful tunnels, that Punky chose not to even attempt. Lots of singing and exercise. This mommy was worn out by the end of the day.

We live as a fairly lower, middle class family in a pretty affluent town. Everything is pretty overpriced, I am intimidated by the moms that I see at the park in their SUVs and stylish clothes. Though I am sure I am just paranoid, I also feel like they look at me funny. So stepping foot into this place was something I sorely did not want to do on a personal level.

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However, for Punky, it was something I was willing to overcome. Also, we don’t have many friends, mommy or otherwise, that we associate with outside of family. So, I wasn’t sure how the atmosphere was going to be with a two mommy household.

After the class, I realized that most of the parents were as new as me, so we were all keeping to ourselves. I also realized that Punky was having fun, though she was apprehensive and I knew that I had to make the numbers work to allow her to go back again.

I spoke with the instructor and got the scoop on the classes and I was told that I could enroll in the Saturday classes and the 1 Saturday a month that I had to work, I could make it up on that Monday. So, it was a great set up for a working mom. Not to mention that they have an open gym play on Sundays, so I thought that might also be awesome.

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It’s definitely worth the money. Punky and I will get some bonding time in an environment where she can play with other kids and learn things. I think the cost is not as bad as I thought, because at first I thought it was a once a month class for $65, but its really once a week class, which is great.

The instructor also told me they are having a special for $20 off the first three months and giving out 4 free class passes, so we could attend 2 classes a week if we wanted to. I think it’s quite a deal and I think we will do it.

Basically, I enjoyed taking Punky to Gymboree and I am glad that we can expose her to other kids her age and bring her out of her shell the more she goes.