I have had this post floating around in my head for a while now and I need to get it out so here is my feeble attempt at putting thoughts into words.
I have this incredible daughter, Allie, who is growing up way too fast for me. While at my in-laws last week we were watching videos of Allie's first two years and it got me thinking about how much life has changed since then. And then I look at her at 14 years old and I remember me at that age. I remember when life was this huge expanse of time in front of me. Time to dream and think and be. All of this time to figure out who I wanted to become and all I wanted to accomplish. When Allie and I talk about her dreams and her future it makes me think of when I was full of hopes and dreams for myself. It felt like anything was possible. Do you remember those days?
What happens to us that makes us lose our dreams? I have been thinking about that because I miss the me I used to be so long ago. I miss the girl who believed in herself and in other people. I miss the innocense and the hope. Where did she go? The other day someone asked me what I like to do and I couldn't think of a real answer. I can think of things our family enjoys together but what do I like to do myself? When did I lose myself and where did I go?
As I have thought about this, I guess I have decided that it has been a slow process over many years. I guess I lost one piece at a time. I lost one piece of myself when I failed my first chemistry test in college and realized I wasn't the smartest one in the class. I lost another when I got involved in a bad and long relationship with someone who abused me and left me with a wounded heart. And then my world came crashing down around me when Emma was born. And again when she died. There are big pieces of me that died with her.
There are major life events that tear you apart but there are also little things like making bad choices or trusting the wrong people. Every time I try to please people I lose a piece of me because I always fail. Or when I put my faith in a person and they let me down. Or when I put my energy into my husband or children and forget myself in the process. All of these things can take the best parts of you and leave you with an empty shell of a person who can't remember what brings you joy or makes you happy or what kind of ice cream you like.
I know this sounds depressing but it is the reality of what this world does to us. We lose ourselves in the trying. Trying to please, perform, get ahead, fit in...
I don't want to be a pieced together person anymore. I want to see the whole picture of who I am and what I can do. Not on my own, but with Christ who is the author of my dreams, the one who knows me and loves me just as I am. No matter how many pieces of me there are, He can put me together again.