Wednesday, February 9, 2011


I am really struggling with life right now.

Part of the issue is winter, I'm sure. I always get like this during the winter. Everything is gray and dead, and it affects my mood. When spring rolls around, I seriously feel like a completely different person. But winter... winter sucks.

But winter is not really the whole problem.

I am feeling this deep sense of pain and dissatisfaction. I hate admitting that I feel this way, but I do. I know my life is great, but I am still struggling. I hear those voices in the back of my head, the question posed to me from a very young age: What do you have to be unhappy about? I guess if it worked to shame myself into a sense of happiness, I'd already be there. I am very good at shaming myself for not being who I think I should be or feeling how I think I should feel.

Sometimes I think that I don't know who I really am beyond being a mother. I mean, I went from being a teenager who didn't have a clue who I really was... to being a wife and mother while I was still a teen. Eighteen years old is young, folks. And while I think I have done okay with becoming a mother at such a young age, it has also taken its toll on me. I had to grow up faster than most people. I don't have much in common with most of my "age group." Although in a lot of ways I never really did. I was in college for a few years, so that was something for me, but once I graduated, honestly, my life began to pretty much revolve around being a mother.

And I can hear the arguments now, that being a mother is an amazing calling, and that raising children is so important, and why wouldn't I want to give my all to my children? I've said all those things myself. And I agree, but I'm not sure that I need to give so much of myself that being a mother becomes the totality of who I am.

Yet I feel like my reality requires that of me, and it frustrates me. Anytime I try to pursue something for me, it doesn't work out. A few years ago, I was all ready to go back to school, I was applying to master's programs... and then I found out I was pregnant with Isaac. I've applied for jobs I think I would really love, but I haven't gotten them. More recently, I was beginning to consider a part-time job or going back to school, and then I got a faint positive pregnancy test only to miscarry a couple days later. I'm still recovering from that emotional roller coaster. But yeah, it feels like every time I try to move into having an identity outside of being a mom, I get put back in my place.

Being a mom is a huge part of who I am. But as I am discovering, and re-discovering, other parts of who I am, I feel frustrated that I can't explore or pursue those things to the extent I desire.

I often become restless and bored, and irritable too. Sure, I can occupy myself getting all riled up and vocal about things like parenting methods, breastfeeding, and birth... and I have certainly done that before... but it feels empty somehow. Sure, I care about those things. I care about them very much. But I don't want to be consumed by them. Those things are not who I am.

There is really no point to this. I'm just sitting here and typing the words as they come to me. And I'm not even sure yet if I want to post this. It feels too raw, too honest, and way too vulnerable. I don't really want people telling me I shouldn't feel this way. This is a tricky stage of life for me to be in. Please be gentle with me. I am struggling to find my way.


  1. Let me know if you want to meet for dinner sometime. We haven't seen each other in a while.

    Reading your post I realize, almost ironically, I'm in a stage of life where I want motherhood to be part of my identity, but I can't seem to get there because I'm going to school to pursue my career. Surely there's a balance somewhere? After all, once I'm there I imagine I'll spend most of my pregnancies while teaching in the classroom.

  2. Could you consider bringing a little spring into your home - - start some seedlings like Amanda is getting ready to do? Do you have a project you would like to begin - - even something as small as reorganizing some cabinets to better fit your work areas - or rearrange a room? That always energizes me. Do you and your husband ever get a date night - - or a night away from home?
    I don't know if any of these ideas are appealing but we will keep you in prayer. Thank you for knowing you can share. We love you. - - - and I am very, very sorry about the miscarriage. We are watching a coworker experience the aftereffects of the same. It is a very sad experience.