Accepting My Identity Outside of “Mother”

Moms, Dads, athletes, professionals, and students are all common ways that people identify themselves. For a period of time during my younger years I identified myself as a Type A Perfectionist. I was born with a plan and goals and nothing was going to stop me from completing my plans and achieving my goals.

As time progressed and I grew up the time old saying proved to be true, much to my dismay; plans are made to be broken. While I accomplished my goal of completing my Bachelor of Arts Degree in English and nearly completed my graduate degree, I never taught like I had always planned. Instead, I married and became a brand new mom who simply couldn’t bear to leave my newborn baby to join the workforce.

Life continued to throw me curve balls though, and after four years of marriage I found myself a divorcée and newly single mom. There were more than a few long, dark nights spent drinking too much wine, not eating nearly enough, and alienating myself from those closest to me all while trying to adjust to my newly divorced and single mom status.

Eventually the darkness faded and my life improved. My son and I had a cute little apartment complete with a white picket fence. He was in pre-school and I was working in the local public school system substitute teaching on a regular basis, while once again working on my graduate degree. Adjusting to being a single mom with no paternal support whatsoever, I had made peace with the fact that I would dedicate my life to my son, ensuring he had all he could ever need. Never did I imagine I would again find a meaningful relationship, nor did I intend on looking.

Yet again, the Universe had other plans in store for me.  Not too long after my separation I reconnected with a dear childhood friend and much to my surprise our relationship quickly developed into much more than a friendship. In fact, my now husband, a critically acclaimed chef, swept me off my feet showing me how a man should treat the woman he loves and treating my son as his own.

Not long after we became engaged my fiancé was offered a position at a prestigious restaurant on The Las Vegas Strip. In this role he would have the opportunity to work under both a James Beard and Michelin Star Rated Chef. The offer was too good to turn down and so once again my plans changed and I found my small new family relocating to Nevada.

After a successful tenure in Las Vegas I was more than ready to come home; Back East. As fate would have it the largest casino in North America was simultaneously recruiting my husband. They were looking for an experienced chef to overhaul their fine dining venue. Again, the opportunity was too good to pass up and Connecticut was certainly close enough to our hometown of Boston. A final cross-country move ensued and we were on our way!

My final curve ball came when we landed in Connecticut. It was as if every broken plan was meant to be broken so that I could arrive here. It all finally made sense. Here I feel alive, my soul soars, and I finally have the courage to identify myself the way I always should have; as a writer. I am finally free of the guilt I once held if I dared to identify myself as anything other than a mom. Here, I am me, I matter, and I have an identity uniquely my own.

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