One of my biggest goals for this move was to step outside of my comfort zone and become more social. When we were at Polk we purposely stayed to ourselves and stayed low key. We had a handful of friends but we rarely made it a regular thing to hang out with friends. Now some of you may be thinking how silly that is. Believe me I understand.
Let me explain why we did this. When we were at Bliss and Kyle was a company commander it was nonstop social interaction. Between interactions with soldiers in the company and FRG responsibilities for me it was people overload and it was exhausting after a while. Not only was I company FRG leader but I was a Battalion Senior Advisor (meaning I was coordinating events for 600-700 soldiers and their families). There was never a day that I was by myself, don't get me wrong I loved it but it was exhausting. I'm not the most outgoing person so it took a lot for me to step outside of my comfort zone. We also had several friends that we hung out with because we knew them from previous posts.
Now don't get me wrong we do not take our friendships for granted but there comes a time when you need to decompress. When I found out that there was going to be no FRG at Polk, I knew that was a sign for us to just recuperate. I was exhausted, I was drained from the constant on the go that I was used to and I needed to just focus on myself, my family, and school. We had 1-2 friends that we saw on occasion but we were happier just shutting in on the weekends and doing nothing (well minus doing races). It was a much needed 2 1/2 years of very limited social interaction, I was able to just enjoy the time and not have any responsibilities that went outside of the home.
Before we arrived in Kansas we made the promise to each other to be more social. To actively engage with people and to go beyond our comfort zones. We have a large group of friends here, but the best part is that I have my group of friends, Kyle has his, and then we are all able to come together as a group. It's an awesome balance. We are more social with our neighbors as well, we find ourselves sitting outside most nights talking with neighbors and letting the kids play. Now that I am part of the Stroller Strong Moms group I have been able to expand my interactions and meet friends that way, I plan on volunteering in some capacity on post, and I also have those who we get together with for playdates. E is also becoming social, she is playing with other kids and I love that.
I know that I would not be able to do these type of things had I not taken the break that I did. I needed the chance to focus on other things. For the first time in a long time I feel rejuvenated and ready to make this an amazing year. There is no shame in shutting yourself in and disconnecting for a while. Honestly, it could be the best thing you ever do.