This month, we have been challenged to write a post about ourselves. I use the word “challenge” because I think as women, and even as people, speaking highly and positively about ourselves is looked down upon. Society makes it hard to find the right words to describe ourselves without sounding “into” ourselves, cocky, arrogant, and just too proud. I think for a lot of people, saying good things about ourselves feels awkward. And accepting compliments is the same. But it shouldn’t be that way. Not even for a second. So, let me tell you a little something about me.
I met the man I spent the last 10 years with while playing soccer, which is a common love for both of us. We dated, bought a condo, got engaged, got married, had a child, bought a house, had a second child, separated and now have divorced. We live 2 miles up the street from each other, which really helps with our co-parenting. Co-parenting is a hell of a lot harder than being married, and we make the best of it.
Getting divorced in my mid-30’s has really shook who I am to the core. While we mutually agreed upon the divorce, it is still one of the most traumatic experiences I have gone through in my 36 years here. After spending basically my entire adult life with a partner, to transition to not having one, has been challenging in ways I never would have anticipated. And ya know what, thank goodness for it.
The best way for me to describe how I have felt a lot of the time, is like an unarmored person set out in the wild. No shield, no protection. When I was married, I was able to hide behind my husband, and my relationship. I did not have to impress anyone, or really need to be smart, or make really big decisions alone, or get to know anyone, or most importantly, get to know me.
The greatest gift my divorce has given me is to be able to get to know ME again. It has given me the opportunity to be in the driver’s seat of my own life, and to make decisions to carve out a life that works for me and my kids. I have learned how much I thrive from having alone time, and not jamming my time with social obligations. I love to be introspective, and to feel how I am feeling at any given moment. Sometimes that includes feelings of sadness, anxiety, worry, fear, loneliness, yearning for deeper connections with people. But most of the time it is gratitude, and joy, and pride in my life.
I know that I am funny, smart, athletic, kind, honest, beautiful, talented, a good listener, tender hearted, a great mother, and a lover of love. I am brave, I am okay being vulnerable, I am strong, I am courageous, I am okay with the unknown. I am eager to learn, eager to be the best version of me, eager to be better at everything I do; in my work, my parenting, as a daughter, as a friend and eventually as someone else’s partner. This is my life, and the more that I get to know me, the more I fall in love with me.
photo credit: Wilder Zandonella