As we get ready to celebrate Independence Day this weekend, I’ve started to think about what freedom means to me. In my early adulthood, I always thought that if only I could get rid of my responsibilities, I would be so much happier. Then, when I became a mom, I realized that the opposite was actually true for me. Motherhood brought so much more responsibility than I had ever known before. But with that responsibility came a sense of purpose. I realized how nice it is to be needed. And in this renewed sense of purpose, I also found a new sense of freedom. Freedom and Motherhood are not 2 words that are typically used in the same sentence, but I have found the experience of becoming a mom to be very freeing in unexpected ways.
Freedom to be Myself
Being a mother has helped me embrace the wholeness of who I am. It has helped me tune in to my woman’s intuition in ways I wasn’t aware of before. I have learned to listen to my instincts, and to wholeheartedly trust that I know what is best for me and my baby. This has been very empowering and I am so much more confident as a result. I am proud of the way that I mother my child. This pride has carried out into other areas of my life. I have learned to trust myself and look for answers within rather than seeking approval from the outside world. For the first time in a long time, I am fully comfortable with being me.
Freedom to be Messy
Let’s face it, motherhood is messy. Before I became a mom, I was so focused on trying to make everything look perfect; I wanted to have a perfect house, perfect hair, the perfect outfit for every occasion. I never realized how vain I was until I no longer had time to fixate on how everything looked. It’s been liberating to stop concentrating so much on outward appearances and get comfortable in my own skin. Aside from having a messy house, and messy hair, there are also messy emotions. I can feel ecstatic, exhausted, loving, angry, and overwhelmed all within the same hour. Maybe it’s because of my hormones, maybe it’s just part of who I am… it doesn’t matter. All of these feelings are valid and serve a purpose. This year I’ve experienced the myriad of human emotions and I’m learning to sit with them all, even the difficult ones, and figure out what I can learn from them.
Freedom to ask for Help
A huge lesson I’ve learned this year is that I can’t do it alone. I need help in order to be the best woman and mother I can be. As a relatively new mother, I don’t have all the answers, and it’s okay to admit that. I’ve found it so helpful to seek wisdom from other moms. I’ve learned that mothers need other mothers for support, guidance, and reassurance that there are other people out there who understand what we are going through.
Freedom to Choose
As a mother, I have so many beautiful opportunities to make the right choices for myself and my family. I can choose to instill the good values my parents taught me onto my daughter. I can choose to leave behind the things that did not serve me, and make better choices for her. I can choose to create new traditions with my little family. The cycle of life is so interesting, and it’s so powerful and healing to realize that I am now in charge of creating the life I want for my family. The depth of these choices is not lost on me.
What does freedom mean to you? And how can you find or create more of that in your life?
Happy Independence Day friends! May we all find freedom in the many roles we play.