Thursday, August 11, 2011

When Mom's Lose Their Identity

If you are a Mom, you probably can relate, or maybe not. I am not sure what it is or where it is coming from (perhaps it is my quickly approaching 30th birthday?!) but the past couple of months I have really been doing some deep thinking.

Do you ever feel like you have lost yourself since becoming a Mom? It's hard to put the feelings I have into words but when I was younger, I had huge dreams for my future.  I was super excited to graduate high school and embark on a new journey for my future but instead, those things got pushed to the side after I met my husband and we started having children. For the most part of the past 10 years, I have opted to stay at home and raise our kids. It's not a decision I have ever regretted. I have loved every minute I have gotten to stay at home with them, teaching them, raising them. Volunteering for all of their school parties and activities. Running them to their practices and ballgames. But lately I have started to feel like maybe it's time for me to move on. To find ME again. To be "Sarah" not just "Andrew, Emma, Joshua and Aiden's Mom" or "Nick's Wife."  I feel like somehow over the past decade, I have lost myself.  Maybe it's selfish of me, I don't know, but I feel like I am getting older and I haven't accomplished anything for myself. Of course my husband was really angry when I said that and he points to our little guy and says, "How can you say that?!" And I know I have accomplished great things as a Mother but I feel like there is so much more to me than that. So much more I have to offer the world than just being a good Mom. And I feel guilty for wanting that for myself but at the same time, doesn't ever Mom at some point feel that way? Or am I all alone here?

College was always so important to me. I started when I was 19. I was newly married and shortly after starting I became pregnant with baby number 1. College for me was a long process. I finally graduated 2 years ago with my husband and 3 children at my side. I was pregnant with Aiden. And I felt like I was on top of the world. I felt so accomplished that I had taken on college while raising a family and I still managed to graduate with honors. But finding a job has been a difficult road. With the bad economy, not many companies want someone with little to no experience and I have struggled. I have sent out countless resumes to not get any calls back for interviews. A few moths ago I did finally get a call for an interview just to get a call while I was on my way there to find that they had hired someone that morning and subsequently they didn't want to waste their time with me.

I have had a seriously crushed spirit until recently. The PERFECT job for me was in the newspaper and I knew it was the job I had been waiting for. I quickly went to work perfecting my resume and my cover letter and I was so excited the day I sent it off. I was even more excited when I got called in for an interview and then last week I went for a 2nd interview. I finally felt like everything in my life was coming together and this was going to be the big break I had been waiting for. Finally it was going to be MY turn to live. With my 3 older kids in school and Aiden already at 18 months, I felt like I could finally start a career and accomplish some of my goals that I had for myself in life. After my 2nd interview, I came home to wait. And wait. And wait. And finally this week, I got the much dreaded regret letter in the mail saying they had chosen someone else for the job. And. I. broke. down.

It was only a temporary meltdown though. I didn't really have time to mope because shortly after finding out I didn't get the job, Joshua and Emma both came down with a virus and I have spent much of the past few days in and out of the Doctor, Urgent Care and E.R. But nevertheless, I have to say. I can't ever remember a time where I have felt so crushed. Broken. Disappointed. And it was hard because I am always talking about teaching my kids how to deal with disappointment and they got to see it firsthand when I came bursting through the doors in tears this week. Emma says to me, "Why are you so upset? It's just a dumb job. There are lots of jobs out there." Oh the wisdom of an 8 year old. So I of course explained to her that this was a job that Mommy wanted more than anything she had ever wanted before. And I had her think of a time where she really wanted something but didn't get it and I told her that Mommy felt the same way. I was just super bummed. And she looks at me and says, "Well are you going to sit here all day and cry or are you going to try and find a new job?" *LOL* So that's what I did. I wiped my eyes and shook it off and decided there must be something bigger and better for me out there. I don't know what it is. Or where it is. Or how I will find it. But somewhere there is an opportunity waiting just for ME and I am going to find it someday. It might not be before I hit 30. But I suppose it's there somewhere, I just need to get out there and find it. Meanwhile, I will keep searching for myself because I know Sarah is still  there somewhere. In the meantime, I am perfectly happy being "Andrew, Emma, Joshua and Aiden's Mom." 


8 comments:

Aria82 said...

I really enjoyed this post and can definitely relate. I'm a mom of two quickly approaching 29 and know what you mean. I think we all time to time feel like there has to be more, like we're losing ourselves in this rat race...I think we have to find something that's just for us and keep it to ourselves, it's ok to be selfish at times, that way you can truly give of yourself to your family and friends. I think it's awesome you've been able to stay at home with your kids, that's the guilt side of the working mom. I did get to enjoy some stay at home time when I was unemployed but it feels different when you're forced to be home:-/ I love the advice your daughter gave you...I pray that the perfect opportunity arises for you and that it definitely comes knocking on your door! Kudos to you for graduating with honors :-)

http://aria82.blogspot.com

Brenda said...

I know exactly how you feel! I'm a 40 year old mom with a 15, 12, and 4 year old. I also love being a stay at home mom, but am reaching the point where I want to be known as "Brenda," not just my kids' mom. Congratulations on finishing college with honors, and I pray that you will find the perfect job you're looking for soon. In the meantime, enjoy the precious words from your children.

Laura said...

I liked readings this, and hope that you find a job that works well for your family life and that you enjoy. I have only been a Mom for 3 1/2 years but in that time I already feel like I'm lost sometimes. I have gained so much weight I don't recognize myself, and I feel like I hardly do anything for me. I never finished college, so there are all sorts of things I want to accomplish when my kids get to school. I always laugh and tell my husband as soon as they are both in school I'm joining a gym for some me time, lol!

Mandee said...

Crazy you posted this because I actually just posted about Moms losing their identity a couple of weeks ago. I think all most of us go through this, especially stay at home Moms. I'm sorry to hear that you didn't get this job. I can't believe you aren't 30 yet! No fair! I thought we were the same age! (I turned 30 in Feb...lol.)
I'm thinking maybe we can just find a way to make blogging our full time jobs (on top of the stay at home mom thing.) Maybe when all of our kids are in school we can get our nails done, have coffee dates and sit in the peace and quiet? Ok, I'm dreaming, but it sounds good! :)

Just know that God has a plan for you and although we sometimes feel like it should go one way, he may have an even better plan that we can not see yet. :)

Sarah Lewis said...

Glad it seems like some of you can relate!!! :) Sometimes I think I am the only one that feels this way. It's encouraging to know that I am not alone!

Misty said...

Oh Sarah! I know how bad those regret letters can be! The grass is always greener huh? I want nothing more than to be home with lily! You have contributed so much just by being such a great mom, and if u r ready to get back out there, woohoo! I know the right job will come your way soon.

Jenna said...

You are definitely not alone!! I feel this way ALL of the time and sometimes think I'm going crazy. Sara my sister-in-law and I always talk about this because she would LOVE to stay at home full time and I'm always like I wish I had a job like you have. Isn't there a happy medium. Craig and I talk about this too because I get so bored and he's like I wish I could stay home. I'm like but you have friends at work and get to interact with real adults all day and he's like really - I wish I could be home with my family.

Sorry you didn't get your dream job- I'm sure something will come along and you will find it, just a matter of time :)

Shelly Peterson said...

Congrats on graduating with honors, that is so awesome. As difficult as it is getting the dreaded phone calls and letters saying they hired some one else. You have made great accomplishments in life. Good luck with the job hunting and even more with finding yourself!! : )

Post a Comment

I love comments!! Thanks for taking the time!