Sometimes we lose ourselves.
Not in the woods or on a street we don’t recognize but we lose pieces of ourselves that were once vitally present.
It happens sort of slowly… You might not even realize it’s happening. That YOU are letting things that are important to you get pushed to the back burner or failing to recognize that parts of you are becoming a distant memory.
Life is a trip. Traveling so quickly, we don’t always have time to pack all the luggage we need before leaving for the next stop. Along the way some of it gets lost in-between the 4-ways and we don’t
have make time to go back & pick it up so, we continue on. Sometimes picking up new necessities as we go…
When I became a mom my life changed dramatically. It was a HUGE milestone on my traveling journey. It was no longer about just ME. It is now about me, my partner & my baby. Now I have to divide my time between 3 people, all with reasonably diverse needs & identities. A new journey of balancing enough time & energy to leave us all fulfilled.
I am many things. I am a partner first (giving & receiving a healthy level of affection, love, energy & co-parenting). I am a mother (Putting my child’s needs above all to ensure he is happy, healthy & thriving). I am an employee (contributing to the financial stability of our household). I am a friend (giving & receiving support through time & distance). I am a maker (fueling my creative passion to share my light with others). I am an entrepreneur (patiently building a business on love). I am a self-lover (caring for my mind, body & soul with time, yoga & healthy practices). I am a planner (finding security in knowing what might come next). I am a do-er (sometimes over-extending myself to accomplish variouss projects but thriving on the challenge).
I am human – imperfect, happy, sad, motivated, lazy, funny, boring, energized, exhausted, thriving, content…I am not all things every day. I am not all things every month or even every year. Sometimes I forget who I am – small pieces of the puzzle interchanging as I develop through different milestones of life – whether for a day or weeks at a time. It is easy to forget which part of me should come first or what is most important at that moment & most needing of my time. Like a scale, tipping back & fourth as I try to divide myself into enough time, energy & resources to fill each void. To be in BALANCE.
For a while, I was living in a heavy fog of grief. It didn’t take long for me to learn that there is no time-table on healing an achey heart. I am taking my time & while I feel that my grief may never fully disappear, I have also learned that it is not all-consuming & that I am built of such strength. Enough so, that if I were to choose to show up to a fight, it would be my own. A fight for me, my identity – who I AM & am meant to BE.
No matter how much of a planner I am, I can always count on the universe to challenge me. What I set out to accomplish or do, will sometimes be matched with doubt, unexpected turn of events, a change in plans and various other detours. I’m not even necessarily talking about building Rome or hiking the tallest mountain. Every day life, just HAPPENS. You run out of time, energy, coffee, patience, lust, ideas, creativity and so on…
But, I am NOT alone. Life is precisely a balancing act. Millions of others are on the very same wavering tight rope as I, in the middle of the same crazy circus. While total balance is something I strive for, I don’t expect it. I think that helps… Knowing we will never have a perfectly divided pie. Unless I spent my life living in 15 minute scheduled increments, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year – we will never be in total balance. I wouldn’t want that anyway because I wouldn’t be happy. I would be bored. Bored, without surprises or failures, bored without unexpected successes or detours. Without the fight…
I have learned that I need to fight for my identity – for a person who is loved for so many different reasons. I am learning to fight for the parts of me I need most on a day-to-day basis. That means, taking advantage of the grandparents babysitting – not by going home to sleep after a long week but by dragging myself out after bedtime to dance the night away with my handsome man. Maybe it means, saying yes or no more. It means, waking up before my toddler to do yoga even though I’m not a morning person. Sometimes it means, recognizing that our routine is getting in the way of our partnership & lighting the fire with love notes & appreciating the little things. Some days it means, leaving my to-do list at home to spend the day with my baby & his sister. Sometimes it means, taking a day off work to go snowboarding. It means, attending networking events after putting in an 8-hour work day to chase my dreams & step outside my comfort zone. It means, reliving joys from my pre-baby life. It means, trying new things…all by myself. It means, making time for the people that matter most & surrounding myself with those who make me feel good about myself. It means, cutting myself some slack & not sweating the little things. Sometimes it means, scheduling a monthly date night. It means, investing in myself & my personal development. Sometimes it means, taking a risk & making a change. It means, visualizing my goals & taking action to achieve them. Sometimes it means, being happy takes WORK. It always means, being the BEST ME I can be.
Sometimes, I have to remind myself that I’m not “just a mom” or “just this or that”, even when I feel like I’m screwing it all up – not being a good mom, not being a good partner or friend or any other number of doubts on a given day…
The 80/20 rule applies.
Failing 20% of the time & getting it right the other 80 – and well, I just might be doing alright.
Somewhere in that 80, It’s important to me that I put a generous amount of energy into WHO I AM as a PERSON. My identity matters. I am more than just one label. I am ME.
Whatever you do – do what makes your soul happy.
Whoever you are – be the best YOU,