Thursday, October 30, 2014

I Am a Mom...but I'm Also ME!


I am a mom. And being a mom is a BIG part of who I am. I always wanted to be a mom and truly feel it is my "calling" (as cliché and corny as it is to say). I spend every day with my kids. Taking care of them, playing with them, loving them. And I really, really enjoy being with them...they are seriously cool kids! 
I think that for awhile after becoming a mom (really like 2+ years), I lost some of who I am. I forgot that I'm still Natalie. Yes, I got a new title, a new passion, a new hobby, and a new way to spend my days, but I am still me. I let being a mom take over my identity completely. I don't necessarily think this is 100% a bad thing, but I do think it started to become a bad thing for me. I can't reiterate enough that I absolutely love what I'm doing. I feel so blessed and thankful to be able to stay at home. I am so glad that my husband wants me to be home as much as I want to be there. Even though I'm so passionate about it, I stopped doing other things I am passionate about. Instead of letting my family be my first earthly priority, I made them my only priority in a lot of ways. Events with friends became very few and far between. Date nights with my husband were way less frequent than before having children. Hobbies, like blogging, took a huge back seat, to say the least. Anything and everything I did revolved around my kids. I think a lot of moms are like this, and I think it's OK! But for me, it got to the point that being a mom was my one and only identity. I didn't do other things I loved, like crafts, writing, reading novels, or even really listening to music (other than Twinkle Twinkle and Old MacDonald!). I have been (quite literally) buried in everything 'kid'...
I'm not sure when I realized this was happening. I didn't have a huge 'a-ha' moment about it, I just started noticing over time that I wasn't doing things that I loved anymore! It made me a little sad. I can be a mom and let that be one of the biggest and greatest parts of who I am, and still have other passions and hobbies! This is one of the reasons I wanted to start this blog. I missed writing. I missed connecting with other women. I missed talking about things that I love. I love that this place is a place that I can come to write what's on my heart, whether it's deep or light-hearted. Whether it's about my kids or about a date night. I can incorporate all parts of who I am. This gives me a way that I can step outside of housework and reading The Cat in the Hat and disciplining, and wiping little faces and hands, and tap into other things that define me. 
The thing that I love the most is that I've been able to find balance. I've been able to find ways to pursue my hobbies and still do all of those things! And the only thing that has really changed is that I've chosen to make the time. I've made that choice and made it happen. 
I think for too long I let myself feel guilty for doing anything that didn't revolve around my kids. I have no idea where this stemmed from...maybe from Pinterest perfect moms, maybe from the Devil planting lies in my head to make me feel like a terrible mom, or maybe just from my own expectations of myself. Wherever it came from, I let it go on for too long. I let myself believe that I had to be Mom and only Mom 24/7/365. I know now that this isn't true. I am still the same mom that I was when I was doing that. Actually, I might be a better mom, because I'm taking time for myself and letting myself pursue other things on top of my family...not instead of...in addition to.
My family is still my top priority. It is my joy and honor to take care of them and serve the Lord by serving them. If that was ever starting to change, I would reevaluate things. But for now, I'm loving that I'm rediscovering me. 

Have you ever let one big part of your life completely define who you are? Was it a good or a bad thing? 
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1 comment:

  1. This is something that really scares me about having kids. My husband and I have talked a lot about how we don't want to start a family until we're in a place where we can still afford to go out on dates, have a sitter/nanny and still be a couple from time to time. Don't get me wrong, I CAN'T WAIT to be a mom and I love kids so much. But I can't imagine I would be a good mom without a strong relationship with my husband. And I think I would be sad if I completely stopped doing the things I love.

    Unfortunately, in today's world, it's unpopular to say things like that. It's also unpopular to put your marriage and your husband (and even yourself sometimes) before your kids. I know I can't speak from experience but I do think every parent needs to still have friends, go on dates and have passions. It makes for a better and happier mom, I think. And I think you absolutely deserve some "me" time, doing whatever it is that you love!

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