Sunday, May 05, 2013

5 Minute Memoir: A life without myself?

I've been thinking lately about this strange and wonderful trip we call motherhood.

I don't have to list all of the ways that it has been wonderful.  That much should be obvious.

The strange part is that I find myself looking around, 20 years into my motherhood journey, wondering where is the space for ME in my life.

There are 8 more years til my youngest is an official adult, and realistically there will be several more years beyond that where I will be needed as mom.

I look at the things I have spent my life doing for 20 years, and by and large it is all about my children (and husband, to a lesser degree).  Yes, I've had my business ventures, and I'm thankful for that.  But even business is largely impacted and constrained by motherhood and family priorities.  The almost imperceptible growth is all about motherhood.

I know that some women manage to keep themselves in a starring role even while being a mother.  I, however, have not.

I'm looking toward the next decade, both in anticipation of enjoying the final push of my mothering years with my children, but also wondering how I could better take care of myself and make space for myself to do some of the things that I would like to do.  It has been so long since what I would like to do has even mattered, I'm not even sure what that is.  I was watching a video with the kids today.  It was about throwing pottery on a wheel.  It looks so appealing, I found myself wondering if I could take a pottery class somewhere, and then of course How would I have time for this? and on and on with the regular objections that accompany all non-essential possibilities.

I have made a start.  I booked a reservation to go away and visit with a friend.  More daring:  I have only met her in person once, and then have been facebook friends ever since.  She is always posting interesting things and I found myself thinking that she would be a cool person to go hang out with.  I told her so, she thought it was a great idea, and now here we are with a trip planned for the end of June.

I'm hoping to make myself more of a priority.  I'm not sure that 30 years of living in mom-mode only is good for any of us.

And, yes, I realize that this is in contrast to my recent posts about wanting to take time to smell the roses with my kids, about my enthusiasm for upcoming homeschooling opportunities, and about my desire to pour out my best upon my family.  That's the funny thing about motherhood.  I love it deeply and fully, but I am also needing some space to fill myself back up so I can keep giving, and also so I am not overwhelmed by the demands and sometimes smothering aspects of  constant service to others.  I do not need a lot, but I do have needs.  What can I say?  I want more.

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