Originally written for The Vacant North.
I’ve always had a wanderer’s soul, and when I found out that I was pregnant with my first daughter, I wondered if my previous life full of jet setting adventures would come to an abrupt end. I can admit that my first few months of motherhood were full of challenges; I felt burdened by self-doubt and resentment towards my new role. I built a comfortable nest inside of my small apartment, and my fear of venturing back out into the world kept us cooped up in our protective bubble for weeks on end.
After seeking out and joining a community of new moms, life started to change for my daughter and I. We started actively participating in life outside of our nest, and I started to feel like my old self. I realized that it wasn’t healthy for me to ignore my adventurous spirit simply because I became a mother, so I decided that it was time to start incorporating my new little appendage into my adventures – we were in this together.
Within a three-week period, we visited Las Vegas, the Ancient Redwood Forests, and, most recently, Lake Tahoe. Walking through the mountains, evergreens, and piles of crunchy snow in Lake Tahoe with my daughter strapped to my chest gave me all of the feels. I felt so thankful that I am able to give her these experiences from such a young age and introduce her to the great big world that is just waiting for her to leave her mark on it; I felt at peace with my role as a new mama and with realizing that I can continue to live my life outside of my nest; and I felt connected to my daughter as we explored this winter wonderland with our sniffly noses and chilly toes together.
The thought of leaving the comfort of your home when you have a new baby can be overwhelming. There is a lot more planning, packing, and effort involved in even the smallest outings, and it is easy to get caught up worrying about the dangers that could be lurking outside of your door. But I think that it’s important for new mamas to understand that having a baby shouldn’t necessarily mean that their adventures are over. As I looked down on the sparkling blue lake and held my baby girl close, I realized that mine are just beginning.