I’m not losing me. I’m finding us.
I have a 6 month old and a two-year old. For the last three years I have either been pregnant or nursing. I have had zero time for myself, and even when I do find 10 minutes, I am almost always thinking about my two littles.
I’ve heard a lot of moms talk about losing themselves.
Women become so focused on winning in parenting and housework and social planning, which is impossible if you put it that way, they end up feeling like a failure. We dedicate all of our time to keeping our littles moving forward, and focus little energy on ourselves. Our goals are for our children, and those goals that we worked towards are almost always put on a back burner. It’s exhausting.
I’ve done a lot of thinking on this idea of “losing myself” in these last three years because it is true. I have given up my job, I dedicate significant less time to my hobbies, and my dreams are looking a lot different now a days. Majority of my energy is put into butt wiping, feeding, mediating fights and chauffeuring. There is no doubt I’m a different person – but does this mean I’ve lost who I am?
“I’m Losing Myself”
I don’t accept the concept that I’ve lost me. I believe I’m finding the us. There are seasons for everything, and right now with toddlers and newborns we are in an adjustment to find the us. I’m still in there, it’s just not all about me anymore. We are all selfish before we become parents because we can be. We have no one else to look out for, or worry about. Before kids, all of my money was spent on me, my decisions were usually based on one person, me. After kids it’s not about me anymore, it’s about us.
What is the best choice for us. How can I get us out the door. Us trumps me. I didn’t lose me, but I am learning to incorporate the us, and it’s not always to accept.
“All my husband and I talk about anymore is our kids”
Of course my husband I talk about our kids a lot, they are hilarious and a big part of the us. This season involves a lot of parenting, and discussions, as we begin to get on the same page as a mom and dad. So we don’t have a choice, kids are a big part of our conversations. We signed up to be parents, so our kids are a hot topic of what consumes our life during this season. We do talk about our hobbies and other business ventures we are pursuing… but somehow our kids always sneak into the conversation, because like I mentioned they go into making decisions and are a big part of who we are.
“I never have time for my hobbies”
During this season I take every nap time and bedtime I can to maximize the me time. The reality is that yes, with one, two, three or more young kids in your life you have significantly less time for things you did before you were responsible for other humans. And the younger they are they more needier they are.
A piece of me is in each of my kids.
If I’m looking for me, parts of my quirks and passions are within the littles I’m spending all day with. If I’m looking for me, I need to not only look at myself, but now I have two more babies who are a part of me and a reflection of me. They are my greatest hobby and accomplishment. Yes, I am a smart successful woman outside of them, but they are the biggest success and a big part of who I am now.
I can’t find the old me, because I am a different person. I have lost myself, and I’ve become an us. I’ve become a mom that is still a passionate personal trainer and a writer and full of adventure… but still a mom. With the new me, a title that now includes mom, the “me” that I feel I’ve lost is still in there, but I have bigger priorities now than just me, I am responsible for us.
This season is so short.
Lottie is going on three, and kindergarten starts at 5. Soon school and friends and sports will take over our schedule, and then it’s my job to not lose the us. Once my kids are in school my time requirements will change, and the “me” time will come back.
I’m not there yet, but my assumption is at that point I wont be fighting to find the me, but I will be fighting to not lose the us. The family dinners, movie nights, bedtime routines and traditions that have consumed my days will be a thing of the past and I can only imagine how much I will miss them.
Hopefully I don’t focus so much energy on not losing the me, that I forget to build the us. Because when my kids are being pulled in different directions, and I have all the “me” time in the world, the us is what I’m going to miss.