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Janine Ciapetta: May Mom of the Month Oswego

Meet Janine Ciapetta, Oswego's Mom of the Month!

-Hometown: San Francisco, CA

-Fit4Mom Member since: July 2016

-Members of your Family: My husband Tony, my 5 month old son Wyatt, and Buster our feisty golden doodle

-Current/Previous Career: I’m currently a stay at home mom, but I was a Kindergarten and 1st grade teacher back home in California.

-How did you find Fit4Mom? I was fortunate enough to meet Atlee online while using the Meetup app. She encouraged me to check out a Fit4Mom class at Hudson Crossing Park. I fell in love with stroller strides instantly, even though I was the only one without a stroller (5 months pregnant at the time). I’m so incredibly grateful to Atlee for introducing me to an amazing group of moms :)

-What has Fit4Mom done for you (or meant to you)? Just thinking about all the ways Fit4Mom has enhanced my life makes me emotional, so I apologize in advance for being super sappy in my answer. Mere words cannot express my deep gratitude and appreciation for our village. Moving to the Midwest after spending 30+ years of my life in San Francisco was one of the hardest things I've ever had to do. Having no friends or family here and a husband who travels frequently for work left me often feeling lonely and isolated.

Going to my first Stroller Strides class was intimidating at first - I was the only pregnant mom there without a stroller . Within minutes I was warmly welcomed by the moms in the group. They offered advice, shared their stories with me, and lent a friendly ear when my pregnancy hormones were on the rage and I just needed to vent. What I realized instantly within this group was that there was ZERO judgment. No one claimed to have all the answers or professed to be the perfect parent. Instead, all the moms relished the opportunity to share the joys and hardships of the day with other women who truly understood.

One piece of advice I kept hearing early on from the moms in this group was to carve out time for yourself daily. Exercise and playing sports has always been a passion of mine, but having an infant at home has made it challenging to get my daily work out completed. When we attend Stroller Strides each morning our day starts off on such a positive note - mommy gets her time to be active and Wyatt gets his chance to play with other little ones in the group. As moms we often have to make sacrifices, but I'm so thankful that Fit4Mom exists so that I don't have to give up on personal fitness for my overall health and wellbeing.

There are countless other small and big details that make Fit4Mom so wonderful. Each mom that I have met in this community has touched and inspired me in more ways than I could possibly describe. I am truly honored to be in the presence of such strong, dedicated, and loving mamas. I've made amazing, lasting friendships that I will treasure forever. Thank you Fit4Mom for providing me with a home away from home.

-What was your childhood ambition? I desperately wanted to be the first girl in the NBA, and if that didn’t work out, I planned to become a veterinarian.

-What does motherhood mean to you? To me motherhood is walking into the greatest, but also toughest job in the world daily. It comes with huge responsibilities and requires a lifetime commitment. I’ve always been someone who thrives on order and predictability, but I’m quickly learning that nothing about everyday life with Wyatt follows the expected. Each day thus far has been full of surprise, sacrifice, and wonder. This lifelong learning journey has only just begun, but already I feel completely overwhelmed (in the best possible way) by love, laughter, and selflessness. Being Wyatt’s mommy is truly a remarkable privilege that I hold very close to my heart.

-What is your favorite exercise? Indoor Cycling (Peloton or Soulcycle) and Running

-What is your proudest moment? My proudest moment was most definitely the birth of my son Wyatt.

-What are three of your favorite things (besides your family)? Wine, Coffee, and my San Francisco Giants jersey.

-If we asked your partner what they think your best qualities are, what would they say? Generous, organized, and polite is all I could pull out of my husband just now when I asked ;)

-Tell us something about yourself that would surprise us: I played college basketball at University of California, Santa Cruz and our mascot was a banana slug :)

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