Who Am I?

This is a question I struggle with. I don many hats throughout the day: wife, daughter, mother, teacher, and myself. Right now I am supposed to be cooking dinner while my husband and daughter watch Jeopardy! together. I currently have neither the energy nor the ambition to stand in the kitchen and cook something.

My husband and I are both on spring break and enjoying the week off and just hanging out. We had plans to do small day trips, but our daughter’s conjunctivitis and a double ear infection quickly derailed those plans. Yesterday was spent at the doctor with our daughter and grocery shopping. Today I decided to clean out the closet. I got rid of two bags of clothes. It was refreshing but also upsetting. I felt that every article I chose to donate, I was throwing away a piece of who I am or once was.

Do you remember in school when they would have you spell your name and you had to write a word that begin with every letter of your name that described you? I remember choosing words like caring, tall, neat, and loving. I recently tried to do that again., but I struggled finding ‘nice’ words to describe myself.

I seemed to have lost myself these past few years. Five years ago I packed up my life in Rhode Island, said goodbye to the familiar comforts of home, and moved to Texas. I wanted desperately to experience life and discover who I was as an individual away from my parents. I would forge my own path through the wilderness. Less than a month after moving down here, I met my husband. In that five years we got married and had our daughter. I do not regret those decisions in the least because I found my best friend and had the best baby in the whole world.

These last five years I’ve changed hats so quickly that the hat labelled “ME” was lost in the back of the closet. I have struggled to make friends here. I moved to a town where EVERYONE went to school with each other and stayed friends and married high school sweethearts. It is hard for me to enter into those groups and make connections.

My husband is from here. He has had the same friends since middle school. They have this amazing, unbreakable bond. I envy him. I rarely visit his friends’ houses anymore because we have our baby and we both feel guilty calling his parents to come watch her at our place an hour before we want to leave. Usually, our friends ask to hang out right around the time we are starting our baby’s bed time routine. I am big on those routines and do not feel comfortable with her spending the night at someone else’s place. I like her sleeping and waking up in her own bed.

Before we had her, I went out and hung with friends as much as I could. Now, no one comes over to visit or asks me to hang out. I feel like I’m at the point of begging people to hang out with me. But I am not looking for a pity party. I know I need to discover who I have become before I can really start making those connections. I am not just a mom, wife, teacher, daughter–I am ME: a strong individual who is not afraid to speak her mind, loves to be silly and enjoys playing stupid games, going on adventures anywhere, and giving everything I do 150%.

To sum up, I just thought of one more aspect of ME: I love to cook! Tonight’s dinner is New England-style baked scrod with homemade risotto. Writing about my frustrations usually helps to boost my spirits and give me juuuuust enough energy to accomplish what I put my mind to. And by the way, I’m cooking because I want to, not because I’m expected to. Right now I’m walking my daughter through the steps of the recipe. She looks captivated, if a little confused. Maybe she’ll take after her mom, or her dad, or be her own utterly unique creature. Eventually, she’ll have to wear a lot of hats, too. But for right now, she’s my little pierogi…and that’s all she has to be.

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12 thoughts on “Who Am I?

  1. I loved the way you expressed

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  2. Oh, Caitlin, I had tears in my eyes reading your heartfelt post. I can relate (somewhat) I live in that small town with friends I have had since elementary school & I don’t take those friendships for granted. I too am on a self discovery mission. My grandma bought me a self-discovery journal, I’m going to share the link with you because it really helped me, and maybe it will help you too.
    https://www.amazon.com/Me-Journal-Questionnaire-Keepsake/dp/1454919337/ref=sr_1_3?keywords=me+journal&qid=1552491048&s=gateway&sr=8-3

    I really like this one because the questions are out of the ordinary. Some are kind of silly, but I think they are still fun.

    After my mom died I struggled a lot, I still struggle with finding myself again. A part of me died along with her and I feel like my inner child has been missing. My husband is disabled and every year it seems new health issue gets added to his already long list. I’ve always wanted to be a mother, but I just don’t think that’s going to happen, so I’ve given up on that dream and I mourn the child I will never have. I also worry about my future because I fear my husband isn’t going to grow old with me. Anyway, it’s tough because I am his care giver as well as his wife, I have a job that demands a lot of my time and attention, and it’s easy to get lost in those sides of me that I lose track of who I truly am! I also love games and you seem like so much fun, and I love children and have always included my friends kids in our activities, wile trying to plan things in advance to give those moms a break from time to time. I know I don’t know you, but I wish I lived closer so we could get to a point that I could do that for you too. I hope you are able to find that friend that gets you & all of your awesomeness. In the meantime, if you ever need someone to talk to please don’t hesitate. Thank you for sharing your story! ❤

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    1. Thank you for reading my story. Thank you for sharing the link, I will be checking it out. I am so sorry you lost your mom and your husbands health issues. That is tough on anyone. My mom had breast cancer and now leukemia, I understand when you say the two hats of caregiver and loved one. I am my moms rock in many ways. Thank you for your kind words. Who doesn’t love games. That friend will come, I need to stop trying so hard. Thank you again for reading my story.

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      1. I’m sorry to hear of your mom. I’ll be keeping her & you in my prayers.

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  3. I can relate to this post so much it seems like your writing about my life! I’ve lost who I am… I didn’t even know who I want to be. I’m so busy being a mum but I’m terrified what will happen when the kids are older, if I’ll have time to be something else… It’s not a feeling I like so I try not to dwell on it, I guess the future will tell… I hope you find some answers for yourself… ❤💕

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    1. I am glad there is someone out there who can relate. I often feel alone. I have often thought of when my daughter grows up, what then? I guess hang out with my husband? 😜 I know the answers will turn up soon. Just need to figure out where to find them. Thank you for reading my story.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Thank you for sharing… living life is about change and following ones dreams… 🙂

    “There are things that we don’t want to happen but have to accept, things we don’t want to know but have to learn, people we can’t live without but have to let go.” ― Nancy Stephan

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    1. You are very welcome. Thank you for reading my story. I whole heartedly agree with you. Life is what you make of it.

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