You blink and just like that, three months have gone by without a peep. Three months of tears and laughter. Three months of frowns and smiles. Three months of learning new skills, and three months of mastering previous ones. You blink and just like that, your baby is no longer a baby.
I’m now the mom to a 16 (almost 17) month old. I’m now the mom to a child who I no longer count her ages in months. I had to do the actual math in my head to figure out what her actual month in age is just now. (Fun fact: apparently, I have been completely miscalculating her age in months in my head and I just had to use a calculator). My baby girl, who not too long ago would stare in amazement at her hand’s ability to open and close until the excitement exhausted her, is now flying through our living room trying desperately to grab the cat for just one hug. She has not once been able to catch her, but I know the wheels are turning in that sneaky head of hers, calculating her next move. If only she could figure out how to climb the fridge. And yes, she has tried.
Abby is growing faster than I ever imagined. Every day she is changing and growing. And in these past three months, I’ve realized that this is the same for me. Before becoming a mom, or even a wife, I felt like I had a better understanding of who I am. I remember sitting on a job interview ages ago, easily hitting the needed points when asked “Tell me about yourself” or “Where do you see yourself in five years?” I had a plan. I fit into the correct template, or at least I was on my way to fitting into where I thought I needed to fit. I knew myself or at least I thought I did. But today, I struggle defining myself. Immediately, my response to the iconic “tell me about yourself” question is “I’m a mom” followed by uncertain silence. I’m a mom. And more importantly, I’m Abby’s mom, and I work hard every day to deserve that title. But, outside of that, who I am?
- Am I still a writer? Well, it’s obvious from the lack of posts here and the empty pages in my journal that I’m losing that title.
- Am I still crafty? My can of electric blue spray paint drying out in my garage, that once transformed an old broken chest into the Toy Chest that Abby rummages through trying to find the perfect stuffed animal, while hoping she doesn’t lose her footing, begs to differ.
- Am I still a runner? Only when it comes to chasing Abby through the store as she giggles and runs from one aisle to the next, giggling and not looking in front of her.
- Am I still me? No. At least, I’m not the me I was before. But who is the me now? And three months ago, I turned 30 and realized, in this past year I transformed me to be a mom and lost everything else that I thought defined me.
As a reasonable and fully adjusted new parent, who just realized she had no real clue of herself, I did what any sane person would do – I celebrated my baby girl’s first birthday and then hopped a plan to Ireland to forget all of about my responsibilities. (And Abby got to spend the week with Mama and Papa – my parents.). Then, after returning home and after realizing Guinness in the states would never be the same, I took a hard look at myself, trying to figure out where the pieces fell. It was as if the puzzle pieces that once fit perfect had gone missing and in it’s place were pieces from entirely different puzzles, ripping corners of others while trying to jam themselves into the vacant spaces.
And it was then that I decided, I needed to get to know the new me. I needed to take myself out on a date and dive into what makes me, me. So, who is this new me? Honestly, I have NO idea! But, I’m trying new things constantly to figure it out. For example, I found out that this new me, still enjoys a bottle of wine that is under $10, surprisingly loves meditation, and unsurprisingly, easily falls down during yoga. AND in my journey, I’ve also discovered that sparkling rosé from a can is both delicious and practical – this new me is just as fancy as the old me. And still terrified of opening Champagne bottles.
So, here I am, trying anything and everything under the sun to figure it all out. It’s time to throw a bunch of things at the wall and see what sticks.