As I’m writing this, the song “Who Are You?” by The Who is going on in my head…
I’ve been sitting and thinking about this a lot lately so prepare yourself for all of it at once. At the risk of sounding outrageous I’ve been trying to figure out where I am, what’s going on, and most importantly who am I. It’s easy to be defined by labels: Christian, daughter, friend, wife, dog owner, mother (and all of the OTHER labels that fall under that one). As a wife I have to keep myself somewhere between following his lead as well as taking the lead. As a friend I try very hard to stay in touch but not be intrusive. It’s also easy to be defined by material items: the car you drive, the clothes you wear, the friends you have. Or times in your life: your past, your present even your future. Needless to say in all of that…I’ve been feeling lost.
Sometimes I’d like to pose the question of “what do you see when you look at me?” to others because unfortunately as we all know the opinion of others is what seems to determine who we are. But that’s not going to help me. I have to see it in myself. But how can I do that when I’m always only thinking about everyone else. I look at other moms that seem to have it all put together and know who they are…and I make the major mistake of comparing myself to them. That’s a bad move because not only do I not know who I am, I start to try to be someone else.
Any mother will tell you, from the second you see those two blue lines or that plus sign or hear those words “you’re pregnant” your identity changes. What I’m stuck on is how do I get back a shred of who I was before I heard those words or saw those lines. I constantly feel like I’m struggling to find where I fit in. Now… as a mom I’m always feeling like I have NO clue what I’m doing. I feel somewhat swallowed up in the lives of those around me. Every move I make has to be based on what others have going on or where others will be…it’s hard not to feel invisible in that mix up.
My point in all of this is: I think it’s a matter of being IN those roles happily vs trying to figure them out. Why is it so hard for me to see who I am when I’ve just named all of my roles. Instead of looking at what isn’t, why am I not looking at what is? I think to a certain extent we all are guilty of trying to figure it all out. I know that to be true by watching our boys evolve and how they struggle to “fit in” or try even harder to go unnoticed. As adults we do the very same thing only on a much larger scale. Which I have noticed is extremely dangerous. Everyone is trying to keep up with the someone else and not truly being who they really are.
How on earth do we teach our kids to be themselves if we aren’t being ourselves?