Last weekend, we loaded up the kids and drove for a little over an hour to get together with my husband’s family. A five minute car ride can be rife with frustration, so an hour with three kids in the backseat can be an absolute disaster. When I got out of the car, I was asked by my sister in law how my drive was. Out of habit I responded in terms of the kids. “Izzie slept most of the way. Cole and Evie fought a bit, but then played nicely the second half of the trip.” She smiled politely before saying, “That’s nice, but I want to know how the trip was for you.”
I paused for a minute, unsure how to proceed. I’ve become so accustomed to my experience being dependent on everyone else that I didn’t even hear the question in terms of me. My kids day impacts how my day was. My husbands day at work can affect my night at home. But somewhere along the lines I have my own experiences and opinions and I need to remember to honor that.
After blinking in stunned silence for a minute, I responded to her actual question. “I had a nice drive. Chad and I talked about some things and I got to read a book for a while.” The exchange was unnatural for me. I realized that it shouldn’t be unnatural to tell someone about an experience I had. I spent the rest of the day very aware of the questions I was asked, and how I answered them.
We often complain that we lose ourselves and just take on the role of “Mom” – which is true. But I find myself accepting that role and not questioning it when I could be making sure people see me as more than that. This year, I want to talk to other women. I want to talk about them. Yes, I’ll talk about them as Moms, but I want to help them find value somewhere else as well.
Here’s my plan for 2019.