How many of us change our “identity” throughout life? I’d answer that all of us do. I mean, are you really the same person you were in high school, or do you really think you’ll be the same 20 years from now? I for one have had many identities and titles throughout my lifetime. In high school, I was the choir/theater girl dedicating my time to music and arts, post-college I was a public relations professional spending a majority of my days working on healthcare accounts and five years ago, I became a wife and my identity seemed to merge with my husband.
And right now, in this season, my identity is mom. It’s been that way for 3 1/2 years. I’m with my kids at least five days out of the week. During the week, they are my life, they take up all of my time and they are my responsibility. We have fun, we play, we go on adventures, but we also cry, we yell and there are moments we drive each other absolutely bonkers. Every day is different from the last and while there are moments I feel like I’ve mastered being a mom, there are other times I wonder if I enjoy it as much as other women. This is my life. Motherhood has taken over me and is pretty much 80-90 percent of who I am.
But the world says, don’t you dare lose your identity, Marina. It’s important for you to continue to be Marina and keep up with hobbies, and find time to put yourself first. Trust me, I completely agree with this mindset and I do ALWAYS find time for me because it is extremely important, buttttttt I do wonder – is it wrong that being a mom is my identity right now? Haven’t I been called to be a mother? Can’t I just be mom in this moment when my kids needs me most?
There’s a reason God didn’t make babies self-sufficient humans the moment they enter this world. I believe we’re supposed to truly ingrain ourselves in parenthood and almost let it take us over. And we can’t escape the love we feel for our child no matter what hobby, interest or person gets in the way – how could we not let it take over our identity when we’re in the thick of it? And isn’t being a parent a tremendous identity in itself? When you become a mom, you become a selfless caretaker, teacher and role model all in one.
So, here I am… I’m Mama. And while I have a “life” outside of my children, this whole motherhood thing occupies my time, brain and everything else in between and I’m absolutely okay with that. And you should be too. You may not have the greatest stories about your personal life and you may not get to go on anymore fancy trips, but that’s okay. Your experiences with your family are shaping you into the woman you are right now, in this moment, and while all of that is happening, you’re helping your children find their identities, which is pretty cool if you ask me. Keep rocking your best identity yet, mamas.
Photos by Julia Maruyama Photography