I cannot even look back and remember what it was that used to make up the person that I see in pictures of past. But maybe that is the way it’s supposed to be. No one ever told me that in my early thirties I would feel slightly washed up and mostly done all the while frantically searching for who I was. Does everyone feel this way or is it just moms with a lot of kids that wrestle with an identity crisis. I find myself lately glancing longingly at those in their 20’s totally footloose and fancy free without really a care in the world. Do they know to live it up now? Do they take advantage of their alone time and independence? Probably not. I know I didn’t. Now as I’m quickly closing in on the ripe old age of 34 I feel a bit stifled and for lack of a better word contemplative. I’m searching right now for me.
Though the joy in my journey to motherhood has been overwhelming at times this newest phase of life that has me changing a two year olds diaper one moment and then incessantly gabbing about "Twilight" and other important teenage phenomenons the next, has me feeling like a slightly new mom and an almost empty nester. How can this be? I’m only 33. I’m too young to have a child in high school (yet I do) and really I have too many kids now to have much of a life outside of my four walls of living. I’ve become someone I don’t even recognize and I wonder if it is someone I can learn to love again, or at least appreciate and accept.
Crazy as it may sound I contemplate getting a little ink on my back or buying a little lower cut shirt to jazz up my day. Is this how we women in our thirties with children try to reclaim our youth? What has happened to me? I swear I am losing my mind. All that I can think of now as I’m up to my elbows in laundry and dishes and sometimes good hair days is that I would like someone, anyone to rescue me. I know that really and truly the only one who can completely and utterly sweep me off of my feet is Jesus. I know this in my head but my heart is looking elsewhere. So here I sit in my spiritual crisis looking to anything and everybody but Him. But even in the midst of that truth I take a strange comfort in the fact that God knows that. I’ve told him as much. I’m in a bottomed out place trying to find my way out. Eventually I’ll get there I’m sure.
Not knowing really what I’ve left totally behind of the old me, all that I can do now is square my shoulders forward and assess the situation and get to know the new me. We’ve chosen a life in Texas with six children and a busy schedule sans husband who is studying like mad for his boards. This is what it is so this is what I have to work with. I just didn’t know these choices would lead to a total reinvention and drastic overhaul of me. I can only hope that as I forge through this phase that when I emerge on the other side I am stronger, more spiritual (even though right now I’m floundering), and more beautiful than I have ever been before. So here I sit sorting out the alarming details of the reinvention of me and realize really that the show must go on.
So today I kissed my two year olds brown chubby cheeks and the bridge of his nose and shoved aside thoughts of my inner total melt down. Today I dropped my daughter off at school teasing her about her fluttering butterflies because she may get to talk to a boy she deemed cute. So what if I don't have it all figured out. At least I was being real and beginning to sort throught the complicated matter of growing up and growing older. The complicated matter of finding balance and peace when one is feeling empty, overwhelmed, and unsatisfied. Even if things in my heart and my mind aren't quiet and settled my day must go on. My kids need that. My husband needs that. I need that. With that I hummed along to the radio searching once again for the answers that so profusely eluded me. Smiling slightly to myself I was sure they couldn't elude me forever. There will come a day when I will embrace this new me and walk in total confidence again. That day will be the reinvention of me.