On going journey

I posted recentlyl about how lost I am and how I am trying to figure out who I am , and what happened to me.

Not too long after posting that post, I got an invitation from a local media personality with whom I had interacted with on her facebook page,  to attend a symposium on empowering women. It was a huge eye opener for sure.

This was very out of my comfort zone. Me. Alone. Large group of women I do not know.  I did it though and for that I am proud of myself. I went in with zero expectations , not knowing what to expect. I knew this person hosting and a couple of other speakers would be trying thier best to inspire and  help us to find power within ourselves.

I learned some interersting things. Only 4 percent of the population are doing what they were born to do. I am not sure how anyone came up with that figure, but if it true, sad.  I think it was kind of ironic that Dove Soap announced in thier most recent ad  that only  4 percent of women around the world think they are beautiful. Both are sad statisics. Strange that they are the same.

some of the advice we were given was

Do your destiny

Lets do this thing

I live by, do something, even if it is wrong,

take action, a plan without action is only a wish

verbalize it, say it outloud to yourself , tell someone else.

Do what you say you are going to do.

Visualize it. Picture joy in the end result.

Don’t be fearless, just fear less

Be courageous, determined and resolute

Never give up

Surround yourself with good people

seek wise councel

Start right where you are.

Do it for yourself.

Do it because you love it

Think outside the box

Take the first step

balance is the key

do it with excellence

We were asked a lot of questions

What do I want for ME

What is the one thing, you have always wanted to do ?

What is holding you back ?

What gets your heart rate going ?

More inspirational quotes,

be in the moment

Do it afraid

go where you are celebrated, not tolerated.

think about what things are most important to you.

then more questions

What gives you meaning in life,

What are the principals and actions that guide your decisions

more quotes

You were made for more

We each have a higher purpose

You were made to leave a mark

We are what we think we are. Identify your obstacles

As yourself how much do I want this  ?

Identify with your goal.

A lot of great quotes,  and I truely enjoyed what all three of these ladies had to say.

The problem is, when you have lost yourself, you are not even in a place to ask yourself these kinds of questions.

How in the heck do I do my destiny when I have no clue what it is ? I have no damn clue.   None . At . All .

What thing are we supposed to do, IF we are struggling to find WHO we are ?

Doing something, even if it is wrong. Obviously many of us are doing the wrong thing, that does not help. If you keep doing wrong things in the hope you will do the right eventually, that does not work. Another saying comes to mind, I believe it was Einstien that said it,  definition of Insanity : doing the same thing over and over and expecting a differant outcome . How many of us do this exact thing ? We think it is us trying to make something happen. We are not supposed to give up. We are supposed to pursue our dreams !! When the dreams do not come true, we might still keep going, just thinking, this time I will make it !! But it never works. Unless it does, and then you got what you wanted and that is really awesome and wonderful, but for most of us, it does not work out that way.

How are you supposed to take action or visualize something that you do not even know ? How can I visualize an outcome when I cannot figure out that outcome ?
I am a huge believer in the law of attraction, but to attract it you have to know what you want so you can think about it and attract it !!

I would love to be courageous. That sounds so powerful. BE COURAGEOUS  !!! BE DETERMINED !! BE RESOLUTE !! Please tell me what that means. I really have no clue at all.

The logical song comes to mind.

It starts out, telling how wonderful and magical life was when he was young, but then he was sent away to become responsible and dependable and at one point in the song he asks to be told what he has learned and as absurb as it seems, can you tell him who he is ? I am not quoiting directly because I am not sure I can legally, but look up the song lyrics, I have heard it recently on the oldies channel and it struck a chord with me.

We start out small kids. Well, babies, and we see the world so magicly. Wonder, joy, amazment, everything is new, wonderful, awesome, and insipring. We start to build dreams, often big , wonderful dreams , and then we become adults and we are told we have to be practical. be moms, ( dads, but I am writing about women here ) , pay the bills, get a job, grow up !! There is no time for nonsense.

So, most of us take it to heart. We get jobs, we put those childhood dreams away. We forget about them  and go to college, if we are lucky, ( I never got to go to college )  work, get married, have kids and do all the right things. And that wonderful, creative, happy, joyful child  in us,  dies a little inside .

I used to love to play games. I spent hours as a kid running in the front yard, kickball, soccer, hopscotch, monopoly, aggravation, the game of  life, and so one. We had our four  kids and when the family  would all  get together for parties, I never got to play. I had to watch the kids. Keep my eyes on four kids and make sure they were all okay. My hubby played croquet , or whatever they were playing. I know he never understood why I would not play. He is a good husband and father, but moms are moms and moms worry. He finally convinced me the kids would be fine, relax and stop worrying and a half hour later, a stranger walked up to the door with our then 18 month old youngest son, letting us know they found him in the middle of the street. Oh dear God. I was beside myself. How he even got out of the house/ yard , we have no clue. After that, it was over. I was not ever going to take my eye off of them again. What every playfulness I had left , was gone. I was a mom, I had to watch the kids, period. That scared me half to dealth. My baby. What could have happened.

Now, obviously within a few years, they were all big enough to not worry about anymore By the time our baby was eight and the oldest was 16 I could have relaxed and not been so nervous, but now it was routine.  This was my job.

Now fast forward to today. Empty nest. None at home.The four kids range from  23 to 32 years old. No more excuses, I obviously do not have to watch them anymore. I do not know how to play any longer. It is buried in me. I know it is in there. But it is buried deep. Add that to the fact I have lost my dreams, and I have lost who I am. It is a hot mess.

I really enjoyed the symposium. They meant well. One lady was leading our table in discussion. I had a turn to talk and she asked me a bunch of questions. I suppose she got frustrated with my answers, she cut me off and went to the next person. The ironic thing is, this woman claims to be passionate about helping stay at home moms not lose them selves. WHAT? So, she takes a stay at home mom who HAS lost themselves and proceed to make her feel pretty bad. I could have been a great resource for her. I am the poster child of what she wants young women  to avoid, yet she made me feel kind of bad. I tried to not let it bother me and continued to participate, but she never gave me a turn to answer a question again.  She is a never married, never had children , around 40ish woman. No offense, but what in the hell does she know about what moms and housewives are going through if she is not willing to listen to even one who is struggling ? I told her get them while they are young, maybe they will not go through what I am going through. that was BEFORE  my incident with her and the questions. This woman also wrote a book about living your greatest life. Hmm, just saying……

I came home from this event kind of in a funky mood. I am very overweight, no  job, let alone career. I could not relate to most of these women in any way and they could not relate to me. A lot of weathy socialite women were there. Business women, career women, business owners.

I need someone to ask real questions. Not give me a bunch of inspiring quotes. I have been collecting quotes for years. They really do not help much.
I know all of those women mean well. I have no doubt in my mind all three of our speakers mean very well. But they ALL have careers and dreams they are living . They DO NOT understand the frustration and sometimes hopelessness women can go through  when they no longer have a focus in thier life. They have worked thier way out of a job, raising kids that are off on thier own and do not need them anymore. It is a hard place to be in. All of thier focus has been making sure their kids are okay, making sure the kids have what they need, not much thought as to what they need. The kids were thier career so to speak, but they get a very early retirement, with no pay and  a life time of experience that does not help them to get a job.

So, step one for me, get a car. I cannot sit at home any longer. I am beginning to be fearful to go places alone and without a car , I cannot !!

So, we did. My hubby wanted me to have a car and an opportunity for a great deal came along last night, just days after this event, and he bought me a beautiful car !!

I went out today. I went to Hobby Lobby to see if they are hiring, but they are not. Next week I will try a new place every day. I then went to Target for a crock pot and a gift and card I needed , and then to Alberstsons for some sale meat ,no really  exciting, but I enjoyed it. It was exciting to me.

As I was wandering around Target, my first time out alone  in a couple of years,  I am dead serious, my first time alone in a store,  driven there  by myself in a couple of years. I remembered a card posted on facebook, and I thought it expressed how I felt in that moment.

I am currently unsupervised !! I know, it freaks me out too !! But the possibilities are endless !!

So, I wish instead of well intentioned quotes, some of the motivational speakers would give us real steps to finding ourselves. THAT would  be movtivating to me !!

I do not want to leave the impression my life sucks. It does not. I am lucky to have a fabulous, loving and supportive husband and four amazing kids and we have three in law kids and seven grandkids. I have friends and I have some hobbies and interests. I laugh, and I live and I love.  I  do however need more. I need somthing of my own to be passionate about. I need a direction. My hubby is not responsible for my happiness, my kids and grandkids and in law kids are not repsonsible for my happiness, and neither are my friends. That is completely up to me.

I need a purpose, a drive !! Something to pull me out of bed in the mornings, excited to get involved and work on that thing !!

So, the journey continues. It is my journey, I have to take the steps. I just have to figure out which direction I need to head towards, once I have that, the rest will be pretty easy !!

Please share your insights, I think we all can learn from each others journeys. We need to share !! This journey is so important. We ALL desereve to be happy and fullfilled and passionate about something in our lives. That child is still in me, I just have to figure out how to rescue her. She deserves to be freed from the prison I put her in, and the fact I did bury that part of me, makes me so sad.

Thanks for stopping by !!

418

I lost myself , what have I become ?

I started this blog because I felt I had lost who I was and wanted to find myself. It was time to be me. I realized today I had gotten away from that journey and it was affecting me.

Today a woman who is struggling with some issues in her life, commented that she needed to get her life back, that she had lost herself in raising her kids and felt she had gotten boring. I assure you this woman is far from boring, but I got her point. I told her this is something many stay at home moms suffer from, in all age groups.  We lose ourselves somehow when we devote ourselves to being great mommies and we wake up one day, at 30, 40 or even 50 like I was and wonder what in the heck happened to us ? It made me start thinking about how I got here, and what caused me to lose who I am ?

We adore our kids, we are told they come first and we put them first. For me, I woke up later in life, and met a fat, on the edge of unhealthy, totally lost version of myself. Who is this woman that looks back at me in the mirror ? That cannot possibly be me. Ah, but it is.

How sad, that the one treasure in our life, our precious kids,they are such a wonderful gift,  are also the one thing that bring us down as the creative , inventive, curious, fun loving women we could be . In our love for them, we lose some of our love for ourselves. Many women learn to hate the woman they have become, which is especially sad. We are all loveable, even in our scattered, lost state, we deserve to love ourselves, and each other. We deserve to be loved by our families. We are lost , perhaps, but not worthless or unloveable. Many times the weight is from metabolic changes caused by childbirth, yet women blame themselves. Yes we are partly to blame, but it happens so slowly while we make sure our kids have what they need.  Weight goes on slowly and one day, like the frog in the frying pan, that when the heat is slowly raised, does not sense it and boils to death, which by the way is a myth I read, but a good way to describe what happens. You just do not see the weight adding up. It really is a shock when you see that video or photo of you, and you say, oh my gosh, who IS that woman , Me ???

We are told, we cannot have it all and do it all well. Why not ? Men have for centuries. They could have a fullfilling career, fame, fortune, or just a great job they love, making good money and then come home and spend the weekends playing with the kids and enjoying having it all. They feel no remorse over housework not done. They do not worry about the laundry. Women on the other hand, tend to take it all on. They work, come home,  do the housework and cook and do laundry while the husband in many cases  has been playing with the kids, or watching tv, but many times when he does offer help, the woman says No, I’ve got it. Guilt is a terrible thing.  I do not think, a lot of the time,  that the men do not want to help, they just do not agonize over it like women do. When they do offer a few times and are told no, many times they stop offering. The women starts to feel she has no help, but she has actually caused it by not letting him help. NOT ALL WOMEN DO THIS, and not all men help either. But I have seen it again and again over time. Or if he helps, she gets mad that he did not do it right and re does it. I am embarrassed to say I have been guilty of that a time or two as I have a wonderful husband who was always willing to help. Once I realized what I was doing, I stopped it. I appreciated the help he was giving and took it the way he did it. It was not wrong, just not MY way. Sometimes things can be done HIS way and they are just fine.

Some women are married or partnered with a man who does not feel he should have to help. I like to think this happens less as time goes on, but it still happens. The women is expected to cook, clean, take care of kids, and maybe even work outside the home as well.  That kind of situation makes it much worse and the result is a complete loss of identity sometimes because they just do what is expected of them with no thought of what they want.

No matter how it happens, somehow, many women lose the sense of who they are. What they enjoyed , things they were interested in. The spark goes out  and they feel let down by life. They do not even realize why they are so unhappy. They just feel guilt all the time, no matter what they do and feel a sense of something missing. When you are home everyday, no adult conversations, cleaning up kids messes and not doing anything you love, you lose more of yourself each day.

Many Dads do not feel guilty for working. It is what they have to do for their families. They go to work to get a check to pay the bills. But many women feel such guilt when they work. They feel they have to make it up when they get home, being supermom,  and they burn out fast.

Cooking, cleaning, soccer practice, they work all day, come home, and work until they drop in bed at night. It never seems to end. No down time, no time to be themselves, over time, they just disappear . They may even look the same,  but they are not the same inside.

I wish as a whole, that  society would support moms more. Women can be meanest to other women. Stay at home moms criticize working moms, working moms criticize stay at home moms. Why can’t we just support each other as women and help each other to be the best we can be no matter if we stay home to raise our kids, or go out in the world and pursue a job or career ? We do not need to put other women down to justify our choices. Many choices can be good ones, you have to pick the best one for you !!

It is time for women to realize thier value. To give themselves permission to find themselves. To ask their spouses to support their journey to find themselves. They will benefit from this discovery as well.

We fall in love with our spouse and some people wake up one day and do not like who they are looking at. But I believe we all take some responsibility in our spouses changing in ways maybe we might not like. Did we encourage them to follow thier dreams, or to even have dreams ? Did they ask them how they are feeling, or what they want to do with their lives outside of their parenting roles. Men and women , we need to do this. Lets be clear,  men can go through this as well, but women seem to really have a corner on losing themselves. It is just as tragic when men lose themselves, but it seems more common with women. I could be wrong, but that is my experience !!

So, we have to give ourselves permission to be happy. We have to love ourselves just the way we are. Fat , thin, young old, it does not matter. We are worthy of being  loved and cherished and we are worthy of finding out what makes us happy.

Reba McEntire has a song that says it all, Is there life out there ? I love the lyrics to this song. A woman talks about how she longs to see what is out there in the world, she does not want to leave her family, just wants to find herself.  This song really speaks to me.

I started on this journey to find myself and got lost again and let this blog just sit here , unused. . Life happens and we just sort of let go of the search and let life pull us along.

No more.

I decided that I am going to work on me.

Exercise, eat better, no drastic food changes, but small positive ones.  I am lucky, my husband is on this same wavelength, so we are doing this together.

pay off debt, a goal with my hubby, we want to be debt free to open door for us to things we would like to do.

I am blogging and praying and meditating to find myself.  I am not sure who I am anymore. I am being kind to myself. I have a lot of weight to lose and I refuse to call myself names or put myself down. I would never talk to someone I loved like that, why would I talk to myself that way. Yet I hear women call them selves horrible names all the time. I do refer to myself as fat, but as a descriptive word, not as an insult. Saying I am fluffy is not going to give me incentive to lose weight. Stating the fact I am overweight, or fat, puts the fact out there and helps to push me.

So, I know this was a rambling post but I just feel so strongly that something needs to be done for women. We should be able to raise our kids, and not lose ourselves in the process.

If the woman I mentioned at the start of this happens to read this, then thank you, you got me thinking about my own journey again. I have been feeling a bit lost and now I can start to work on finding myself again. That is the worst part, when you lose yourself and forget the journey you started to find yourself. Life can take back over in a second, we have to be diligent, but we can be happy, we can be fulfilled, we can be interesting and are probably more interesting then we realize,  we just have to get out of our own way !!

We can be moms and can love our kids, and give them a lot, but we have to give to ourselves too.

I have always heard when you are on a plane the instructions are, in an emergency, put the mask on yourself first, make sure you have air, so that you can save your kids. this is the same thing. When we are interested in life. When we enjoy our life, when we are happy, the kids benefit.

We have to put ourselves and our relationships with our spouses first , the kids need us to do that. We have to give ourselves that oxygen first. Then, and only then, we can take care of them . They will be better people if we show them an example of a happy fulfilled mom. What a great gift to give our kids. To show them how to live well and keep themselves intact while they raise a family. It is hard to do, but we can do it. I am praying we can see the next generation coming up not suffer from this.

It is never to late to find ourselves. We need to be a shining example to other women.

So, I start, and will take it , one day at a time, on breath at a time, and I will get there, and the discovery of who I am will be all the more precious for the journey I have been on !!
Thanks for bearing with me, but I feel so passionate about this, I appreciate you stopping by and would love to hear your input. I do not claim to know it all, just know how I feel. I would love to hear how other women deal with this, and the men who love them. So, comment away, I would love to hear from you !!