lost and found

>> 2.16.2014

I feel like I spend an abnormal amount of time writing and talking and thinking about motherhood, but I guess that makes sense considering I am swallowed up in it literally 24 hours a day.

With the addition of a second child, I am finding more and more that I feel like I've completely lost any sense of who I am outside of changing diapers, sweeping crumbs, and trying to come up with creative activities that don't involve any sort of screen or animated character. I forget that I was once a person with autonomy, someone that had talents outside of being able to carry a screaming toddler, carseat with infant inside, AND diaper bag all at once. I used to write, and read books, and have friends, and stay up late talking with my husband just because we could.

Now, I write about my kids, I read about things I need to do so I am better for my kids, I have friends with kids, and I stay up late talking with my husband because it's the only time of day we see each other without being climbed on, puked on, or cried at (unless its me, crying at him).

I'm trying desperately to regain some of myself, but in doing so, I'm realizing just how much of myself has changed. I look back on that twenty-one year old that flitted around Chicago and I cannot help but wonder at how self-absorbed and so incredibly naive I was. Obviously some of that is normal, since you only change and grow by going through life-altering events, but it also makes me feel like I'm on shaky ground, because I don't know just how much of that silly girl to reclaim. My children are my life, my job--being a mother is what I want to do, and who I want to be. But it's not everything. It can't be everything, because if I lose myself in that, I put the burden of my identity on my kids, and that's something that they should never carry or be responsible for.

So for now, I'll sit here and try to scrape the rust off my fingers, and pick up a book that has nothing to do with parenting in any sense and I'll try to remember that I am capable of creating things outside of human life (even though they have been my best work yet).

4 thoughts:

Kari Kotter February 16, 2014 at 9:10 PM  

Lady we need to get together for lunch or something asap! PS I know exactly how you feel. Two kids is hard!

Robyn February 21, 2014 at 1:02 PM  

Hey there. I've read a few of your blogs (I'm a friend of your hubs from Kent in the UK!) and I want to encourage you - you express yourself so elegantly and put into words thoughts I've had but have been unable to pinpoint. We had a son in October last year and I'm finding it a blend of absolutely awesome and absolutely the most difficult thing I could imagine. So keep writing - even if it's about motherhood all the time, because if anything else... It's encouraging for people like me! All the best with you and your family. Say hi to your husband from me! Robyn x

Kirra March 6, 2014 at 8:49 PM  

Love this. And so hear you.

Bethany Tab April 16, 2014 at 12:22 PM  

I have thought about this dynamic a lot. With one child, I've been able to hold onto a bit of myself, but I feel really strongly that when we have two I'm going to have to dive in completely and hold onto nothing of my old self. I'm afraid to have two!

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