Some days I have thought, "Where did I go?" I have wondered what happened to my dreams along with my character. I have wondered if they would ever find their way back to me, or me to them. I have wondered at times if this losing of myself is a sign that I made the wrong choice even. "Maybe I shouldn't have been a mother," I have wondered in my lowest moments of doubt and missing that self I felt I once was, but no longer was.
Then I look to this sweet dear face of hers. She is sleeping deeply. She is giggling playfully. She is focusing intently on a new discovery. This person whom I found... in my arms, in my heart, in my life, in my every single moment... she is so much better than whatever else I was on my way to do before she came.
But there is someone else I found that wakes me out of the lost and into the found. It is me, her mother. Because she came, I had to search for the "who" I truly am.
The person I have found in myself is a woman who knows love like she never did before, never could have. I thought I was strong before, but I have found deep reserves of strength and perseverance I did not know I had. I have found talents of balance and bounding to rival circus performers and mountain yogis. I have found a perspective that I wished to find my whole life; one of deep gratitude and recognition of our commonalities.
Being a mother has meant finding how to be in the world in sheer overwhelm of both the lows and the highs. It has meant finding my way. It has meant finding me, the real me.
I'll admit that I did this more for her than for myself. I wanted and still want to be the best I can be in the world, for that world, which she is such an important part of. I want her to see this, to experience this in me. I want her to have an example that threads her being with the same perseverance to be her full true self.
Of course, we are endowed with this, aren't we? She doesn't need me to be herself, and I didn't need her to be myself, to find myself. But I can't help but think that we are given each other in this life to inspire the work it takes to be true. For whatever reason, as erroneous or spot on as it may be, I am forever grateful. Motherhood has blessed my search and my being.
The person I have found right here in my own me is so much better than who I thought I had lost.