After this last year of COVID and becoming a mom, I’m having a hard time finding who I am.
I have historically been a pretty self-aware person. I am aware of my flaws and can allow myself to see my strengths. (Sometimes) I can feel myself in a group of people and seen how to fit in with a group or excuse myself from feeling the need to fit in.
That has all gone out of the window lately. I have been so wracked with anxiety lately, a lot of it centered around managing others’ expectations and my own identity.
Who Am I?
Truly, who am I now? I have emerged from our “out of normal lives” into a completely different place in life. I’m a different person in SO many ways I haven’t had to chance to know who I am.
I feel so much pressure to show up, but when I do, I don’t know who will arrive.
A large part of being a human is knowing who you are in the context of others around you. I haven’t had that in over a year. My context has been temporary and filled with faces on screens, not people who can see with their eyes what my life looks like. I’ve been able to curate myself to my audience, showing the pretty parts, or even the abridged versions of the hard parts. Very few know the actual pain that’s in me. It’s been too easy for me to hide.
I think there has also been so much pressure in our world to keep it looking good to others. I will always think about how in a Zoom meeting, my husband was told that holding our daughter was unprofessional. There have been so many times that I’ve felt the need to “hide” the fact I have a daughter, but every time I go into the office to work (a traditionally baby-free environment) I’m asked where my daughter is.
I have often been thinking about how I’m supposed to be when I have no idea who I am.
Identity in Christ
I’m a good church girl, so I’ve of course thought about how I need to ground myself in the reality of where my identity lies. I know, after all, my identity is in Christ.
Honestly, though, I’m terrified of that thought. Jesus has felt so inaccessible to me for so long. I don’t want to walk towards him with my ugliness and my brokenness. I want to be able to keep curating my context with him.
I’m learning, even though it’s SO hard, to let that go. To abandon my need to control my image. To let myself just be. To just exist in the presence of God and to let that be enough. Work fades, motherhood, wifely duties, friendships, they all fade. Jesus won’t and he is enough.
I don’t write this as a neatly wrapped package. I am a true mess right now. I hope there are others in this spot and that we can turn to the unmovable things in our life to hold to.