Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Finding Myself

Honestly, I am a 28 year old single mom and I have no idea who I am.

Maybe that sounds weird to you... or maybe without me even going into much explanation you feel the same.

I used to be better acquainted with myself... and then I became a mom... and the person I was became consumed by this other being. I was a mom... what else did I need to be?

Fast forward to today... My kid is seriously amazing, and I can’t believe I get to be that amazing kids mother. Being a mom has changed my life, but not always for the better.

What a terrible thing to say right? That being a mother has affected my life negatively. Being a mom is amazing, but I allowed it to define me in such a way I no longer knew who I was as an individual. The question I hate the most is when someone asks what I like to do for fun (which when you are in the dating world is pretty much like one of the first 5 questions someone is going to ask you). Ummm... Does watching Paw Patrol and going to bed at 8:30 count as fun? I mean do I do things for fun? Do I do things for me?

I do things I have to do. I do the laundry. I pay bills. I go to work. And sometimes, when all that is done, and the kid is fed, the animals are cared for and my house is cleaned, well if I'm really lucky I get a nap. Naps are fun right?

Somewhere in these last four year of becoming a mom, getting divorced, and having a stroke I stopped doing things for me.

Want to know the worst part? That on the very rare occasion that I do make the point to do something just for myself, I feel guilty.

Guilty because there are things that need to be done, because there are more important things I could spend the money on, and because I'm already away from my kid while I'm working, so I feel like a bad mom for getting a babysitter.

I know this is all irrational, but its how I feel.

Being a mom will change you, it has to. You have another human being you have to keep alive. But I don’t think that we have to exchange our motherhood for our individuality.

And then I had an epiphany: Taking care of yourself is part of taking care of your kids.

Now I wish that you could leave this blog and add my name as the author of that quote, but I actually stumbled upon it while cruising through quotes on Pinterest.

I want to be happy, because I want my daughter to be happy. I want her to remember growing up with a mom that smiled and had fun... not someone who just made it through the day doing the things I have to do.

Have to's are part of life. But they shouldn't be your whole life. We should make time to do the things that make us smile and help us to feel a little more whole.

It’s amazing how God created us to be mothers. How our bodies work to make and give birth to a baby. That maternal instinct that we as mothers would do anything to keep our babies safe. We were created to do this. 

However, I don’t think just because God created us to have babies, means he wanted us to forget who he created us to be in the first place. God has placed desires and dreams inside of you. Motherhood can sometimes make us forget the dreams in our heart. Maybe they seem less important, or maybe they seem unrealistic now that we have a kid in tow. 

So this is my challenge to you... and to myself: Make a list, it doesn't have to be a long list it could just be a few things that you don't seem to do at all or as often since you've become a mom. Maybe it's reading a book, or going to a movie, or spending time with girl friends. Make a list and make it a priority to start doing some of those things.. Maybe there isn't time every day, but I feel like this is desperately needed in my life.

I don't want my daughter to ever feel like she is a reason that I stopped doing things that make me happy. We can have kids, be great moms, and still make time for things that make us feel like people. You are a mom, but you are also a whole person apart from your kids.

I think finding joy in life is so much easier when we make time for the things that bring us joy. My daughter is definitely one of the main things that brings me joy, but not the only thing. And that is OK! 

So I am going to do more for myself, so that I can be a happier person, and in turn a better mom. And maybe I'll soon be able to come up with a better answer when someone asks, "what do you do for fun?"

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What is Paigerific? I’m glad you asked, although I don’t have an exact definition to offer. Paigerific is my thoughts and my heart. Paigerific is my passion and my fear. Paigerific is my success and my failures. Paigerific is my blood, sweat, and tears. Paigerific is more than just simply word. It’s a million different words all rolled into one. Words like hope, grace, determination, imperfection, love, faith, insecurity… The one word I would use to describe myself? I am Paigerific.


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