by Barbara Cutting of One Hopeful Heart
We all need to belong. Somewhere. With someone. With others.
Humans are social animals. And as much as I love alone time, I do need to be with others too. I need interaction. Advice. Acknowledgement. Acceptance. Attention. Conversation. Feedback. Compliments. Even criticism is helpful from time to time.
I crave community. A sense of belonging. I need to fit. And I realized yesterday–amidst the throes of a weepy Saturday–I’ve spent much of my life trying to find my fit. Where I belong. Who I am in the middle of this world around me.
I also realized yesterday, there are precious few places and people where and with whom I feel that fit. Never found it in high school. Or college. And God, I wanted it so badly. Somehow that feeling of fit was tied up tight with self-concept and self-confidence. Perhaps if someone else believed in me, then I could (and would) believe in myself.
I’ve come a long way in the years of my living since those uncertain teens and twenties. I fought to find my fit in my thirties too and finally found my bestest belonging ever–when I became a mother. Hardest job E V E R. Still is. But finally, finally, I felt where I fit best. I belonged with those boys, and they belonged with me.
So that brings me to today. To finding my fit in the present. Because I’m not really needed as a day-to-day mother anymore. My oldest is off flying jets. My youngest, off to college. I’m more of an as-needed, situational mother now.
The adjustment has been difficult. For me. I’ve done my job, raised two amazing young men, and, because I’ve done it so well, they’re gone. As they should. As they’re supposed to. They’re so ready. But I’m so not. I’ve been grieving. And I’m struggling–again–with finding my fit. I suspect it will take more than one weepy Saturday to find it.
I started One Hopeful Heart last year only knowing that I needed to write. Ever since my very first post, I’ve been wondering where I belong as a blogger. I’m not an education blogger. Even though I’m a teacher, I don’t feel a calling to write specifically about education. I’m certainly not a political blogger. No interest there. And I’m not quite a lifestyle blogger either.
Or am I? Because in middle all of this wondering about who I am now that my children have grown and gone, I’ve discovered I’m now living a lifestyle I never anticipated. I need to figure out what to do with the rest of my life now that mothering no longer fills it quite so constantly. I’m approaching the end of my career as an educator, and while that certainly deserves and receives massive amounts of my attention and effort, that career too shall come to pass. Once again, I need to find my fit.
And that’s what my blog is finally–and at long last–about.
It’s about finding fit and learning just who I am and where I’ll belong next.
Doesn’t that sound exciting?!
Photo credit: By Cortega9 (Own work) via Wikimedia Commons