Who Am I?

(Slightly fuzzy, a version of me)

 

The favoured question of 20 somethings, mothers, 30 somethings, 40 somethings, divorcees, partners, husbands, wives. Dogs, maybe.

“Who Am I?”

For the last four years, maybe seven years, I have struggled so much with the concept of who I am and what my purpose is. I do tend to blame my middle class catholic schooling for this pre-occupation. Choose subjects on what you like and do well in, become whatever you choose to be, you will only succeed if what you do is based on something you love. That’s a lot of pressure on a teenage kid – finding their “thing” in their teens and making it their career.

My things were: People. Drama. Drama. Drama. I am good at talking to people. I did psychology and struggled like nothing else, became disenfranchised quickly, I dropped drama which had been my crux as I simply didn’t see a career in it… I had a boyfriend who didn’t like me drawing attention to myself, so I stopped.

I became a shell of who I was.

New boy, new faith, started finding that I liked being part of projects bigger than myself, that I was passionate about a lot of things that had been hiding, dormant in myself for years.

Then I had my son.

(Like every photo taken in this time, I am fuzzy, with a vacant expression. I may have been alive, but not living)

The thing with unplanned pregnancies and youth is that you do feel judged every step of the way, you cannot keep up with your friends from before as easily and the centre of your life shifts. At 21 I stopped going to clubs, having crazy late nights, stopped being spontaneous.

There’s a part of me that died when I gave birth to the new life that is my son.

Motherhood in a lot of ways hasn’t sat easily on my shoulders, but motherhood is also one of the most important aspect to my life. I am responsible for guiding this little person into adulthood and into himself. In time, I have come to realise that my son is a gift – sometimes the gift of being a live in zen teacher, but a gift nonetheless. I am fortunate to be a mother. I am fortunate to be HIS mother.

So motherhood is at the core of my being. But there is more to me… and that’s what I have struggled with.

My delicious friends who have chosen to stay by my side while I muck this out (and you know who you are) are absolute saints, as I have been in a record groove for a while.

I was discussing the project with one of them recently and I paused between words and she said “…but you can’t until you know yourself, right?”

Me “But I know who I am”

And I do. For the first time in my 20’s.

I am me.

I don’t fit into a mould. There is not one single term that encompasses who I am – I am mother, yes, partner, yes, daughter, friend, lover, soul mate, god mother and all those things.

I am strong. I have weaknesses

I fall. I get up again. Sometimes it takes longer than other times.

I am not perfect. If I try to limit myself to being perfect, then I am not going to fail. I will not learn.

My aim in this life is super simple: I want to leave my corner of the universe better than how it was before. How to do this, for me, is with grace. Smiles, thank-yous, eye contact, listening, remembering, sharing, giving and taking. Being a good person. That’s all I want to do.

Seven years of agonizing for something so simple.

Ultimately, it doesn’t matter how I consider myself (truly).

I just am.

And that’s enough for the moment.

Old and New

I did something I have _never_ done yesterday.

I admitted defeat. I have been struggling to be 100% prepared for my drama teaching prac exam – so I withdrew. I will take it early next year. The truth is, I did well, very well in the accompanying theory exam and I don’t want to fail this beast – I want to do well. I know I can do well and I just haven’t put in as much work as I needed to. Done. So I am now 1000% more relaxed and excited about pulling it together, rather than being miserable and terrified. It was the right thing to do.

 

So I am editing photos for Christmas and friends and overdue projects. Some oldies that I have fallen in love with:

Mwah!

 

Have a beautiful weekend!

 

Lxxx

Love.

Goodness.

 

I went to Valentino at GoMA today.

 

An absolute joy! No photos allowed and they’ve sold out of the catalogue, so you’ll have to take my word!

 

I came home inspired… naptime or cleaning time?

I am tired after a stressful day yesterday (teaching, exam, waking up early!!!), but decided to….

 

Re-organise our room. It’s the seasons!

So… when the spouse came home from work, this confronted him:

Getting into the room is challenging, moving in it nearly impossible and finding something??? Take up nuclear science – much easier!

 

The spouse just smiled with his eyes. Said it was looking good.

 

That people, is true love.

 

Between yes and no

Okay, first things first.

I am swamped with things to do – parties, exams, celebrations, organising and parenting seem to be absconding witht he bulk of my days.

Secondly, I had to interrupt this hiatus to simply edit pictures and share.

Halloween 2010 was big in our household this year, even though we are in Suburban Australia. I chose to share Halloween with the boy because it’s a fun way to learn about different cultures and it led the way into some great discussions about death, travelling and Catholicism. Anything that leads to asking questions is worth it in my book.

The way our street does Halloween is respectful, too. About a week before the day, we send out a letter to each house in the street asking them if they would like to receive trick or treaters. If yes, please leave the enclosed balloon out after dusk on whichever day and you’ll receive a visit. If there is no balloon, we do not knock. About 1/3 of our street participated this year and it’s a great way to say hello to neighbours, meet people and have an excuse to dress up.

Also? Great way to see the neighbourhood children. Dressing up is an absolute joy!

Without further ado:

(Yes, I know it is noisy. Oddly, I like it in the second one!)

 

Originally we were going to be three batman villains – Poison Ivy, Mr Freeze (the boy) and Two face (the spouse). The boy changed his mind upon working out that he could use a cowboy gun/handcuff set to complete his costume. I was sold when I saw the red hat. I have a red cowboy hat that now lives in our house (joy!). The vest is from the costume box, the pants came from the back of the cupboard and the witches were a halloween bonus.

Funny aside: in purchasing the weaponry (don’t get me started. I do not believe that owning a toy gun will make my child a terrorist. Violence? Gosh, actually, let’s forget I started this topic…), I told the boy he had most of the sherriff kit at home anyway. Loudly, the boy says, “but mum, we need the handcuffs! We don’t have handcuffs at home!” The woman walking past snorted.

I changed my hair colour in anticipation of being Poison Ivy – red. I don’t think there is a single photo of me with it red!!!!! I did it and then almost cried because I hated it. Thankfully, it is washing out quickly. The future will not be red for me, I assure you.

Now, of course, time to hit the books again. Only a short time to go until I am free! See you on the other side!

Lxxx