When you have little ones, it is so easy to get swept up in the day to day of “mom-ing.” You are constantly needed and in demand. Your entire soul, all of your energy, and everything you have to give goes to them. What results is so little given to yourself.
I know who I am as a mom. I know that this is a shifting role, one that I am constantly defining and redefining as my children grow and need me differently. I know what I value, what behaviors I will and won’t stand for, I know that part of my soul was destined for motherhood. I don’t have much self-doubt about my worth as a mother, and I don’t find myself saying “I’m not a good mom.” Because despite the battles I have with my kids, and the toll they take on my sanity, I think I’m pretty good at that job.
What I don’t know is who I am as me. I struggle with knowing that I am so much more than momma – even though that title fulfills me in ways I could never have imagined – but not quite knowing what exactly ME looks like.
Outside of my children, I am unsure what my path is – what I want to do, who I want to be, how to put my passions and strengths into action, how to make something of all the hopes and dreams I have. And how to do all of that while wearing the extraordinarily exhausting and time-consuming hat of momma.
I went to college for one thing, went to law school for a different thing, went into a different career then either of my degrees dictated, and have an endless amount of things I love doing. This often leaves me spinning in circles, stuck beneath a net of uncertainty and confusion, desperately searching for the right path.
What I am learning daily is that there is no one path. There are so many paths, and heck, I can trail hop all day long, all life long if I want. Life does not have to be defined by one thing – I am momma now, but I don’t have to always be on the path labeled momma. We can wear one hat, or travel down one path one day, and wear another hat, on a different path another day. I can dream, and plan, and aspire to as many things as I want. But more importantly, not knowing is just as good as knowing.
Every day my notebook gets filled with goals. Every day I search the job boards. Every day I think about how amazing and fortunate I am for the opportunity to have quit my job to be home with my kids, while also pursuing a freelance career. Every day I question what course I want my life to take. And every day I end up alternately confused or filled to the brim with ideas about what could be.
What I want myself to know, is that it is okay not to know. It is okay to just be. I want myself to know that it is okay to be a dreamer and a realist. It is ok to be a drifter and a homebody. It is okay to want to stay at home with my children (let’s be real, rocking my PJs until 9:30 is pretty sweet), while also aching to be a successful career woman. I want myself to know it is 100% okay to have no f*ing idea what it is I want to do with my life and instead decide to just live. It is okay to explore a new path and fake it until I have made it…or I haven’t. It is okay to have a dozen hobbies that I suck at, or have just one that I am good at but too scared to do anything with. It is okay to be a success and it is okay to fail. It is okay to feel like I should be so much further in life than I am right now, because one day I will be right where I should be. It is all ok.
Life allows for so many deviations, pursuits, and dreams, if we can just embrace the uncertainty. Right now, I am first and foremost mom. And while I know that won’t always be the first descriptor after my name, at this moment, it is. Right now, I can be mom, communications strategist-attorney-designer-dreamer-entrepreneur. Right now, that is me.
In the words of former radio announcer/author Jerry Gillies, “You will recognize your own path when you come upon it. Because you will suddenly have all the energy and imagination you will ever need.”