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I'm Pam, and I'm glad you're here. I hope my thoughts on family, faith, and the flux of life help you laugh, fire you up or just make you think.

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will the real me please stand up?

[22.365] sphere-itize me, captain

I might be having an identity crisis. 

It hit me in the midst of an amazing Vienna Teng concert at our local hot spot The Ark, for so many different reasons. 

Vienna’s performance moved me.  She’s so talented, so sharp, so lyrical and poignant–you MUST check out her music.  She sings of intimate personal issues as well as major world events in a smart way that leaves interpretation up to the listener.  So I started interpreting, and suddenly, the whole concert was all about ME, of course.

I know that sounds crazy (and egocentric), but you see, Vienna went to my same university, so it got me thinking about my view of the world back then.  Like any college student, I had my whole life in front of me– a blank slate with so many options.  I wanted to do it all and honestly believed that I could.  She sang a beautiful song about world and life-changing events including the fall of the Berlin Wall, where I lived for a few months.   It was a powerful time in my life, when I first traveled the world, discovered my independence, and fell in love with a boy back home all at the same time.  Then she wrapped up with Grandmother’s Song, which starts out sounding like an old-fashioned honky tonk and finishes with a powerful message about pursuing a woman’s dreams.  It was perfect.  I loved it.

But after we got home, I blubbered like a baby.  My poor husband was so confused. 

I think I was mourning the young woman I used to be, the dreams I used to hold dear, and the passions I pursued.  Now let me be clear:  I love my life today.  I’ve been shaped and refined by the twists and turns, I don’t regret any choices we’ve made, and I wouldn’t go back if I could.  Life has led me in a direction very different from what I expected, and the blessings have been greater than I could imagine. 

I must admit, though, that there are pieces of me that I’ve pushed aside through these last few seasons of life.  And I feel like it’s time to reconnect with some parts of the me I used to be.  No, not all–I’m happy to leave a few parts by the wayside–but yes, some.

I’m reading a great book that speaks to this and much more:

Mama’s Got a Fake I.D.:  How to Reveal the Real You Behind All that Mom by Caryn Dahlstrand Rivadeneira.  She writes from a Christian perspective, but I think the issues about motherhood and cultural identity are universal.  As I work my way through this book, I hope to share with you some thoughts along the way.  Stay tuned.

For now, do you mourn parts of the person you used to be?  If so, come along the journey and let’s work it out together.   Tell me what you think.

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10 comments to will the real me please stand up?

  • I mourn the creative part of myself…left behind when I started working full time. For now, I write but I used to craft all kinds of things, participate in craft shows and also scrapbook. I also mourn no longer being a stay at home mom, my favorite job of all. But as my kids got older and choices were made to have them attend private school, working outside the home became necessary. However, I really love the job I have now because it does allow more time for family and to pursue my interests. So who knows, maybe that crafty side will resurrect sooner than I think!

    Annie’s last blog post..Seven Starts For the Rest of Our Life

  • Kel

    I definitely do some days. Especially when I’m thinking on my children’s future and worrying that they won’t realize their full potential or some other thing Moms worry about. And just watching them grow and becoming who they are. I think back to the time when I was that age and what not…and thus the reminiscing begins. I’ve always said I’d like to do this and that, but keep putting it off until my baby gets older, and then well when she starts school, and then another baby comes along and so on and so forth. *sigh*

  • pam

    Annie: I’m glad you’ve found a job where you can also pursue what’s important to you. Good luck bring back the crafter in you!

    Kel: I can definitely relate to how you feel. I think I’ll have more time as the kids get older, and then that next stage has different challenges. It’s not too late, though, if we make a plan and bit by bit make Mom a priority too. That’s what I’m working on right now. Thanks for visiting!

  • Great post! Most of all I mourn that radiant sense of possibility – that feeling that my whole life was ahead of me. Like you, I wouldn’t go back, but I wish I’d been brave enough to do more with the part of my life that’s gone. Not to have worried so much about what people might think of me.

    Tess’s last blog post..The wide open sea

  • I do. Often. I’ve had some amazing experiences (like we all have) that I sometimes really miss. I miss being so free-spirited, naive, calm…

    I get what you’re saying, and I’ll love to follow along–very curious about the book!

    I’m off to check out this great music you speak of :)

    Heather of the EO’s last blog post..A Special Need

  • [...] will the real me please stand up? [...]

  • Carol H.

    I used to mourn my loss of free time, time to do what I wanted to do and the loss of time to be creative. Now that my kids are older (youngest a senior in high school) I’ve got my time back. (And I’m as busy as ever! ) I recall never feeling like I’d ever get to this point in my life, where I could have a say about what I’d get to work on. (So those of you with young ones – hang in there!) I wish I could have seen that my day would come back again and then perhaps i could have been more patient with my children. (Oh well, they’ve turned out to be great kids and I’m enjoying them as an adult and a soon to be adult.)

  • To everything there is a season. For a while I forgot that. When you’re in the middle of something, clarity of vision can be a challenge. I’m LOVING this season of being a mother and a wife and nurturing my family. It’s so encouraging to see fruits of my labor. Soon, I’ll be entering overlapping seasons. I have no idea what’s coming, but it is exciting, challenging, inspiring . . .

    Julie Stiles Mills’s last blog post..t minus 5 days.

  • pam

    Tess and Heather: So glad you can relate. Look forward to more insights from you as I process through this.

    Carol: Thanks for the perspective from the next level. You give us hope ;-)

    Julie: Yes, remembering each stage is a season has helped keep me sane through many different challenges. Thank you.

  • [...] something I’m doing or thinking that has attracted these into my life (perhaps that recent little identity crisis?), or if there’s just so many of them being published, but I have an embarassingly high stack [...]

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