Life happened and I got lost on my way to my computer. Don’t you hate when that happens? Almost four years and two kids later, I’ve decided it’s time to try to find my way back to that place I’ve longed to be for quite some time. It was an emotional decision that hit me like a ton of bricks. It had been a rough few weeks of my daughter teething and not sleeping. This resulted in a breakdown of feeling completely overwhelmed and sucked dry of whatever I had left in me. I yearned for some time and the ability to start feeling like my “old” self again. With my son starting school full-time and my daughter turning one soon, I decided it was the right time to do something for myself (and for my sanity).
“It was an emotional decision that hit me like a ton of bricks.”
Back in college, I was a journalism student and freelance writer in Chicago with a passion for writing and current events. I had aspirations of being a successful journalist at a newspaper or writing politics for a news website. Soon after graduation, I married my journalist husband who is from Brooklyn. After I settled into living in a new, bustling city, I began working for a non-profit that intertwined my loves of writing and politics.
Months after I began working, my son was born and the rest was history. I devoted all of my time to being a mother. Writing was put on the back-burner. I didn’t want to miss any milestones in my sons life, so I focused on just being a mom. I always knew I would eventually find my way back to writing, and I’m so glad that I took this time to focus on my children. But a part of me felt missing. I felt guilty for wanting to do something for myself, knowing my children needed me. Who was I to complain about motherhood and not pursuing my dreams when most moms felt this way?
No one told me that there would be days where I wouldn’t want to get out of bed because of the tantrums I would face. At night, I can’t wait for my kids to go to sleep so I can sit on the couch and have a piece of chocolate without being disturbed. When my daughter wakes up screaming in the middle of the night, I can’t help but pull the covers over my tired body, hoping she will stop on her own and fall back asleep. These days, being able to take a ten minute power nap during the day is a treat.
Despite the never-ending exhaustion, motherhood is the most rewarding and selfless job on the planet. It’s 24 hours a day, seven days a week and no matter how good or bad the days are, the love for my kids continues to grow. But there are some days I forget to love myself. I forget to take time to just do me. I need to take a break from talking about poop and cleaning up toys. Just being able to take a shower in peace is like a day at the spa and going to the grocery store alone is a mini vacation.
After fighting with my “mom brain” on what I needed to do in order to feel somewhat normal, my husband encouraged me that it was time to start writing again. I needed to get my writing groove back. My “mom brain” has been in full effect these last few years, so I wasn’t sure I would even remember how to start gathering cohesive thoughts. All I could think about was singing ‘Do you wanna build a snowman?‘ with my son while dancing around the living room. Luckily, it came pretty quickly once I started typing how I felt. I now realize that I never lost myself; I just didn’t recognize me because I was covered in spit-up and soft snack crumbs.
“I now realize that I never lost myself…”
I will never be my “old” self again. And I no longer want to be. I now have two beautiful children and a husband that I would do anything for. There have been more experiences and adventures in my life than I can write about. It all comes down to balancing family life while still taking the time to do things for myself, guilt not included. So, I’ve decided to not keep my emotions bottled up and to release them at my fingertips instead. I’m ready to start some self-care by cutting myself some slack and getting reconnected with my writing roots, mommy style.