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(re)defining me

in Random Musings

to do

Photo by Mattox on

When the youngest of my three kids started school this week, I realized just how much free time I had on my hands. As a stay-at-home mom, I finally have time to pursue my writing passion! Halfway through a romance novel, I was excited to knock it out and see where I wanted to go from there.

That first day I took my kids to school, came home to a quiet house with two cats, and frantically tapped on the keys. I did the same the second day. My traveling husband was out of town, so that left me with the nights alone in front of the screen as well.

After tucking the kids in bed that second night it struck me that I had not talked to another adult that knew me as anything other than “Mrs. Richardson” or “X-kid’s mom” for 4 days. I had emailed people, Facebooked people, and even did some Tweeting, but there was no actual communication with another adult.

Keep in mind that I am naturally an outgoing person. But given the opportunity I can also fall into a hermit-like state. I can stay in my cave of a home for days if not weeks without being missed.  But after those days or weeks, I don’t really feel fulfilled.

The reality is that to achieve the dream of bestselling author that I’ve always thought I wanted… I’d have to adopt the hermit lifestyle. Every successful author that I’ve had the pleasure of talking with has told me that publishers, editors, and deadlines rule their life with as much pressure as any 9-to-5 job out there.

Is that really what I want?

I keep coming back to the thought of having to “claim your own happiness.” The idea is that you can’t wait for someone else to make you happy; you have to do it for yourself.

But what does that look like in a mom that has given her entire life to making other people happy? What does that look like in a people-pleasing, cynical, outgoing hermit?

I’ve always been who I was supposed to be to make others happy. Being a servant has been my spiritual calling. But I feel like I’m being released from some of that. I believe I have a destiny, and I believe that includes writing and helping others, but I don’t know how all of this works together.

I’m 36 years old, I love my husband, I love my kids, and for the first time in my life I am free to actually have a life outside of the labels of wife and mother. Now I just have to figure out what to do with it. I have my priorities straight, but I still need to learn how to strike a balance between them.

I’m choosing to back off of the self-imposed writing deadlines and focus more on learning how to be happy. I want to figure out how to enjoy my life and the people in it without being so pressured.

I’ve undergone detours in life before, but they’ve always been hand in hand with my husband as we switched ministries, careers, cities, or houses. This is the first time I’ve had to do something like this for my life rather than our marriage. It is both scary and intriguing.

Can you relate?

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