I was on the phone with my sister this weekend and we were talking about something…I mean after a solid 90min I’m not sure what lead us to this tidbit, but the topic came up about finding myself! I told her that I finally feel like myself again after having my kids and getting out of the baby years, but then I realized this was probably the first time I’ve ever found myself, or at least this new version of myself. Growing up is a never ending cycle of change from adolescence to college to thinking you’re doing this adulting thing, but realizing you were still such a baby! Follow that up with marriage, kids, special milestones & heartaches and you look back and see a million different versions of yourself that have been constantly growing and adapting to what life has thrown your way. So many differences from one phase of life into the next.
Well this new phase is when the kids start growing up and need you just a little bit less everyday and you’re face to face with a person you might not even recognize physically, mentally or emotionally. The biggest thing I hear women say that are in a similar phase of life is that they need to find something for themselves. They want to find “their happy” and “their thing”. But I’m realizing a “thing” isn’t going to fulfill that. After years of taking care of others it’s now time to actually get to know the current version of ourselves, but what we find is that person is often times a hell of a lot different than we remember her to be.
The laid back, sarcastic “YES” person is now often times a high strung, still sarcastic “NO” person and you wonder what happened to you! Well, I’m just gonna boil it down to LIFE happened. It would be impossible to be the exact same person after years of change so let’s stop looking for who we were & start looking inward and get to know ourselves; have a date with yourself so to speak.
What is she like, what does she want, what can she become?
I learned in the midst of a panic attack on an airplane that carefree was no longer an adjective I could use to describe myself. I have lots of cares, so many that it took a year of medication to feel even remotely okay followed by lots of routines & tendencies (my poor husband) to accommodate my anxieties. I will not go to the movies, I have to avoid watching the news at all costs, and sometimes I will be up pacing my house the entire night thinking of things that could go wrong. It’s brutal, but it’s a part of me now.
I learned that my tendency of biting off more than I can chew now has consequences and the idea of balance should only be used in my dance/yoga classes. If I want my business to grow I have to say no to doing things during the week. If I want to workout I need to set my alarm for 5:15 and forfeit those extra hours of sleep! If I want to teach dance I need to give up a night with my family. Everything is a give and take, and the idea of doing it all is an unrealistic expectation that only sets me up to fail!
I’ve learned that I have very little patience for bullshit and am learning to not feel bad about cutting it out of my life. The only drama I enjoy is on Bravo TV! If you commit to something, do it. If you don’t like something, change it. If you have a problem, solve it. And most importantly, if you need help, ask for it! The world is not responsible for your choices, you are, so take accountability. I can only hope I raise my children to take ownership when they’ve done something wrong, learn from their mistakes and never play the “poor me” card. Everyone has their “stuff”. It’s all relative. Now what are you going to make of yourself because I don’t have the talent to play a violin for you. (I’ve also learned that sometimes I sound like a total bitch when I don’t mean to. I should work on that)
I’ve learned that not drinking water for 30yrs of my life & working at a tanning salon were STUPID ideas and the wrinkles on my face will forever be a reminder of that!
I’ve learned that I need affirmation and have often looked to my husband for it, but it is something I truly need to give to myself! So maybe it’s time to put post-it notes all over my house saying, “you’re doing a great job!”
I’ve learned that at the end of the day I may be different than I was in the past, but if I can still consider myself a kind person and own all my flaws, I’m doing okay. I will likely always have tons of mom/wife guilt, things unchecked on my to-do list, a disaster of epic proportions in my house and will be constantly evolving into the next version of myself, but I’m happy with who I am today! Different is normal. What can you learn when you get to know yourself?