One thing I have been working on lately is letting go of old versions of myself. We sometimes have this idea of who we are and when life happens and changes this idea, how do we let go? How do we fully embrace the new version of ourselves? We cannot fully live in the now if we are holding onto or grieving these different women we’ve become along the way.
Young and Carefree
If you know me, you know I have a terrible memory. I sometimes forget this girl. This girl had big dreams. She knew what she wanted in life and she was pretty sure she was going to get it. This girl loved to act, sing, and dance and swore she would be on the big screen someday. She loved to have fun. Wasn’t into drinking, never tried drugs, just had pure clean fun. She didn’t need much reassurance from anyone. She was confident and I think it was evident to everyone that met her.
This girl I remember clearly. She thought she was ready, at the very young age of 22, to take the giant leap into marriage. She was happy but lonely many times. None of her friends were married and everyone was out partying and living up their 20s. Nonetheless, she felt like she was doing what she was meant to do. She was meant to be someone’s partner. This girl was an elementary school teacher. She got home and did everything a wife was “supposed” to do. This wife was following her path—the path of building a family.
This woman, I am not grieving. I am her. A mom. Now that my kids have friends, I am known as “Tyler and Olivia’s mom.” I love this version of me. She is strong. Nothing can knock her down because she knows there are little eyes watching. She does what needs to be done and although she messes up, she doesn’t fail because failure is not an option when you are a mom.
The “What Am I?”
This is where I am at the moment and the version that I think women go through several times in their lives. I am now a single, working mom. A career woman while also being the mom running from activity to activity. There is a constant question about what this chapter is called while, at the same time, trying to start a new one. I believe the “What am I?” stage can be the most transformative.
When you realize that who you are today is made up of all those past versions of you, you do not grieve as much. You did not lose those women, they evolved and, piece by piece, made you today’s version. One day, today’s version will fade away and become the next tiny puzzle piece to your greater self. Instead of grieving the phases that are gone, celebrate all of them and accept exactly where you are.