I’ve been going through the motions for a while now. Kind of aimless in my destination and unsure of where it is I’m headed or, even, what I want. None of that has changed, don’t worry, I’m still confused as hell. However, I am more focused, now, at wanting to figure it out and get there.
Four years ago, my kids were getting older and more self-sufficient and I felt a lull in my life. An emptiness, a loneliness, a craving that I needed to feed. I needed to find Tena again. Not the mom, not the wife, not the maker of dinner, not the folder of laundry. I needed to find the person I was before I was all of those things. I had forgotten about myself and completely neglected all things me. A person that did things because she wanted to not because she had to. A person that had passion and opinions. A person that was confident and well-spoken. A person that was more than “just” anything.
Writing to make sense of things had become one of those “me things”. It was a much needed outlet. I wasn’t going to save the world, change lives or become a millionaire, but it made me feel more balanced and in touch with what was going on in my life. I made connections with like minded people and have met some people that I consider true friends till the end. The craving had been fed and I began to like myself again. I began to feel worthy again of more than changing diapers and being a chauffeur.
My life had been defined by my kids and running my household for a long time. Too long. For some, that might have been enough, some can find satisfaction in taking care of people and being needed. For me, it just wasn’t. Something was missing. I used my family as an excuse; my mundane existence was a crutch to not take chances or put myself out there. It was just too exhausting and I wasn’t strong enough for the rejection. Writing filled that hole. The friends I met along the way reminded me of a worth that I had to offer beyond housework. I began to believe in myself again and was happy.
Then, I got pregnant again. It was an unexpected stumbling block that kicked my ass. Just as I felt I was beginning to stand on my own two feet and believe that I could be more than “just a mom”, here I was, put back in my place. I envisioned late nights with a needy baby and my destiny was cemented as being just a mom forever. The me time was short lived.
Over the last two years, I have dealt with a great deal of depression, self loathing, and downright insecurity. I’ve been fighting like hell to get back. I’m not sure if I’m strong enough yet, but I’m trying. The hardest person to convince is myself.
Ironically, the baby that was such a surprise and threw me into this tailspin of negativity and self doubt, is the same boy that brings immense joy to me on an hourly basis. He has become a strong-willed boy that thinks he can do anything. I owe him and my other children the encouragement and example that they never have to settle for being “just” anything.