Yesterday, my sister-in-law shared this blog post with me. Go read it.... I'll wait.
It hit me in the gut. It summed up so much of where I am in my life right now. This... this paragraph:
"Holy crap, you guys. We’ve got to get our joy back. We think it’s love to allow our roles –mother, wife, volunteer, career woman – to consume us like a fire until we can’t even be seen anymore – but that’s not love. I think our kids want to really see us. They want us to leave a part of ourselves unconsumed so they can see us. I think our kids want to see us come alive sometimes. Our kids never asked for martyrs. It is not love to allow yourself – your spirit – to be buried and then fade away."
This is me, people. I've let all of these roles I play every single day take over every fiber of my being. I'm constantly thinking about who I need to take care of, who I need to please, always doing THE RIGHT THING FOR EVERYBODY BUT ME.
When the girls were younger, Danny and I each had one night of the week that was ours. He took writing classes at Second City. I took classes of various sorts - knitting, hula, tap dancing. It was fun, and it gave me an outlet, something to do that was just mine. But as the girls got older and our lives got busier, those things, too, seemed to disappear.
The problem, though, is that it's a bit of a vicious circle, isn't? I'm so busy doing things for others that I'm too tired to do things for myself, so I don't do the things to take care of either my physical or mental well-being. I figure if I can make everyone else happy, then I'll be happy, too, right? It doesn't work that way, though. What I'm really doing is not making anybody truly happy.
So I read things like this Momastery post, and I know that I am not alone in feeling weighed down by the expectations and stresses that I PLACE ON MYSELF.... I know the things I take on and that pressure to be perfect is not coming from an external place; I can choose to ignore the perfect party Pinterest pins and the picture perfect version of motherhood that is projected through various media sources.
I can find those things that feed my soul, those things that have fallen by the wayside over the past few years. I can reconnect with friends who I've not been a very good friend to lately.
I can find my joy.
I will find my joy again.
So thank you, Kris, for sending this my way on a day when I desperately needed it. Keep 'em coming!