Motherhood is an Identity Crisis
Motherhood changes you in ways you've never imagined.
Identity is who a person is, or the qualities of a person that make them different from others.
Naturally who I thought I was and wanted to become changed drastically from when I was 10 years old to becoming a mother of two.
My dreams of being the first black female country singer with songs featuring Alan Jackson and Tim Mcgraw transformed into being a pediatrician, then a pharmacist, then a supermodel, to a host of other things. Even thru those transitions, I was never lost in my identity. Of course, I was trying to figure things out-like every other teenager and young adult does, but motherhood left me questioning, "who am I?"
I never had to ask myself who I am. I've always had some sort of baseline that I could go back to, but motherhood stripped me of that and had me looking in the mirror hopelessly searching for the little girl who wanted to be a country singer or a pharmacist. Desperately trying to search for some sort of foundation, a single brick in which I could rebuild my foundation, but nothing was there.
My body wasn't the same. I was consumed in making sure my new baby was fed, clothed, trying to figure out daycare, get our household finances under control, and still give my husband attention. Will my dreams of owning a business die? Will I have to wait until I'm old and retired before I start manifesting the life I want to live?
I couldn't find any solutions online and embarked on the journey of self-rediscovery on my own. Here are some of the things I've learned.
- You're going to have to fight.
You are going to have to strap down and buckle up because it's not going to be easy. Your mind is going to tell you to put everyone first, that it's okay. For example, (and this is just something small) baths. Your husband can give baths, or feed them. Designate days to do certain things. Such as having Wednesdays be days for laundry. You will always have a long to-do list, and you won't be able to get everything done in one day. Set time aside whether it's 30 min to 1 hour to work on your business. Whether it's a blog or doing research, honor the time you have set and STICK TO IT! Just like you stick to your baby's sleep schedule stick to the time you have set for you as well. Your husband or partner can take over for one hour.
2. You can't Pour From An Empty Cup
If you are full you will have the capacity to provide the overflow that your family will need from you. The problem I ran into, was trying to pour into my family and nothing was coming out. So even when I felt like I was doing something and providing them with what they needed I wasn't because I had nothing left to give. I either still felt like a failure or I was doing a whole bunch of nothing. Find what refuels you and commit to being filled first. Remember even in a plane crash they say to put the oxygen mask on yourself first before you help someone else.
3. Prioritize over Balance
There is no such thing as work-life balance. It's impossible and you are going to run yourself ragged trying to figure out how to master it (The limit does not exist....quote from Mean Girls if you missed it) Prioritize what you deem as non-negotiables and make your way down to the tasks or items that can be deemed dismissive. For me, it is God, Me, my family, then my business and household chores. That's just me. God will always be the rock on which I stand, then I make sure I'm stable and full to be able to take care and ENJOY taking care of my family, then I can accomplish tasks for my business, and the household items will get done eventually. Removing the stigma of being able to do it all, and shifting your mindset to completing tasks that make you feel like you're getting things done while providing you with the fuel you need is going to be a gamechanger.
4.Try doing old things you used to enjoy
Yall, I found the early 2000s and late 90s playlist and I instantly became Brittany Spears. I had so much joy singing songs and dancing to tunes I completely forgot about. I also watched one of my favorite movies Save The Last Dance and was able to just transport back to a time where the weight of the world wasn't on my shoulders. Even if just for a brief moment it flashed me back to a moment where I could pick up a brick to rebuild my foundation again.
Though there are parts of me that have changed due to motherhood, there are still pieces of the old me that I want to take with me. I'm not a fan of the motherhood - new me thing. There are still parts of the old me I want to carry with me and maybe even share with my children. Be encouraged mama, one brick at a time you'll be able to restore the pieces that may have crumbled a little over the years.