Looking back, I’m not sure when I stopped being an individual with my own passions, interests and name, and became known solely as “Mom.” (Or, frequently, “Mooooooom.“) I became a being whose primary purpose in life was to provide for the needs of her family.
Now, don’t misunderstand me. I love my three kids and my husband dearly, but somewhere along the way, who I am to them overshadowed who I am as a person. I chose to make them my priority and slowly, one decision at a time, I began to lose myself.
As a new mother, I was honoured to get the title of Mom. It was a life-altering moment; the start of my journey into parenthood. I began to call myself “Mom” when talking to my little one and over time my husband did too.
Then one day, as I was introducing myself to a new parent at the playground, it hit me: “I” no longer existed as an independent being.
Somehow, I was known only in reference to which child I belonged to. As I looked around the playground, I realized I wasn’t alone. There was “Aiden’s dad” and “Maddy’s mom.” But who were they? Who was I?
I started to think about the parts of me I had lost or at least set aside to make room for “Mom.” The list started to get really long. Like, really long. It was clearly time to reclaim myself. Lucky for me, this happened at a time when my kids were getting older and their demands on me were becoming less.
If I had been a bit brand new to mom-hood, the timing might not have been perfect. If you’re in that phase, figuring out how you are as a parent, please don’t feel like you need to pull away from being “Mom.” Still look for small ways to stay connected to who you are as an individual.
Getting my sense of self back was tougher than I expected. I mean, I knew what my wants, likes, and interests were… right?
I knew what I loved doing as a mom – providing a loving, safe, clean home for my children, being their cheerleader, counsellor and consoler, earning bonus points for baking them cookies, taking them to the park, or spending time reading that “one more story please, Mom!”
But none of that was 100% for me and my own needs. I started small. I incorporated little things like picking a book I wanted to read when we went to the library as a family. I turned up the radio when my favourite song was playing. I prioritized finding 10-15 quiet minutes to journal, which helped me reconnect with myself and kept me accountable to make these changes.
The more I took care of me and made time to do things that fuelled my passions and interests, the more confident and happy I became. I felt like a whole person again. That allowed me to give more in my relationships to my children, my spouse, and my friends. This improved version of me let me be a better mom.
Yeah, I might still be known as “so-and-so’s mom,” but at least I know who I am again.
If you are feeling lost like I was and don’t know how or where to start, I invite you to reach out to me. Reach me by email, by joining our Empowered MOMs Facebook group, or by booking a discovery session phone call. I’ve been where you are and am here to support and encourage you every step of the way. Let’s connect and together we can discover your