will the real me please stand up?
I might be having an identity crisis.
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.