Mom did you give up your dreams to stay home and take care of us?
This coming from my 11 year old felt like a stab to the heart. My knee jerk answer was absolutely not. Then I kept replaying the question in my mind over and over again. Did I?
I did respond to him 2 days later (that’s how long it took me to formulate an answer) and explained my choice. Why I felt it was important in our situation that I be home. The fact that we are away from family, that I would like to share with them our culture language and tradition. It was a fraught subject one I am still grappling with.
Am I raising my boys thinking all women can do is be home with children. Will my daughter respect my choice and be able to choose for herself. I was driving myself crazy.
It also raised the question of “my dreams”. 13 years ago I knew exactly who I was, what I wanted and what my life would be in the next year, 5 years, hell I even had a ten year plan. I bet God had a good laugh at my expense. Somehow between having the children and the move to the US and the past ten years my dreams got fuzzy and somehow I lost the ability to dream for myself. I wasn’t sure why I was feeling blah since the children all started school this year. I suddenly had the time to do things and yet I didn’t know what. I could fill my days with chores or volunteering but it didn’t make my heart full. Something was amiss but then watching Jada Pinkett Smith yesterday things came into focus.
Having children and being a wife is a very fulfilling experience but in the same time I am not good at striking a balance between my role as a mother and wife and being myself. I don’t know what Imene needs. I forgot how to take care of myself. How to fill my well.
The moment in the video that is making want to change things is when she speaks of imbalance and how when we reach that state we look to others (our children, our husbands) to bring us happiness. That was the defining moment for me.
The same way I came to blogging in my very first years as a mother and found a community and a way to define myself. I am back today in this space sharing my experience and hoping that by starting a journey of writing and sharing here I will find a way to take care of myself again and achieving a balance.
If you’ve made it so far, thank you !