I’ve been quiet. Like reeeeeeally quiet for quite some time. For a while, I couldn’t figure out what happened to my muse. Honestly, I thought she died with Penelope Joy.
Then, she peeked back in every now and again — just to make herself known, I think. So I knew that wasn’t the case.
“Maybe she’s on vacation,” I thought … hoping she was somewhere less gloomy, drizzly and cold than here. But, no, it wasn’t that at all. I know where she went — where she is.
She’s simply been waiting.
You see, lately, I’ve been struggling. Struggling with a lot of things that I won’t really go into here. At least not right now. Let’s just say that I’ve not been feeling like the truest, best, most authentic version of myself for a while. And, if you know me in real life, you know that’s true. Don’t worry — it doesn’t offend me when you say that. We all need people in our lives to tell us the ugly truths about ourselves. I mean, if you can’t tell me when I have spinach in my teeth are we even friends?
Last night Mr. B and I took some time to talk. To really talk. That, in and of itself, was a gift. Because we don’t really get a lot of quiet time these days where we can focus on anything other than what bookshelf the younger one is climbing and what tantrum the older one is throwing.
Even more than the pleasure of Mr. B’s company, I had his ear. And I finally opened up a bit about how I’ve been feeling. And he opened up a bit about how he’s been feeling.
I told him I’m not the best version of myself right now. He said he knew.
I told him I feel like I’m not really my own right now. He said he knew.
I told him I need to do more for myself. He said he knew.
(See where this is headed?)
He and my muse knew something I hadn’t been able to vocalize for fear of being weak. Of being seen as a failure. (Ask me what my biggest fear is, and I’ll tell you: failure.)
I’ve been trying to pour from an empty cup and that cup has finally gone dry.
I’ve been struggling because I’ve been feeling like I’m not my own right now. I’ve either been pregnant or breastfeeding since January 2013* — which means that not only has my life changed significantly in that time, but my body has also not been my own for more than five years. And because of that, I’ve put myself in the backseat. I’ve not been doing the things I enjoy and the things I need to do to live my authentic life.
It’s no one’s fault but my own. Mr. B is an amazing supporter and encourager in the “me time” arena. He’s looking out for me in ways I don’t look out for myself in that respect. Regardless, I’ve been neglecting myself and my own needs. Not just at my expense, either; an exhausted and struggling me rubs off on everyone I come in contact with — especially my beautiful little family.
My muse is always the strongest when I’m my strongest. And I’m my strongest when I’m giving myself some attention. So here goes nothing …
*Please don’t think for one second that I’m not grateful and amazing and blessed that I’ve had these experiences. Because I am all of those things and more. I know that some people would give everything they have for them. But, that doesn’t make what I’m saying any less true. Because momming is hard, y’all.