on the evolution of selfLast week during one of many recent migraines, I sat to meditate. Using a mental picture I borrowed and morphed from Kelly, I place myself in an octagonal shaped room with 8 doors. The room is filled with my thoughts, concerns, and other mental chatter. One by one, I pick a thought, address it, and place it behind one of the doors and lock it. Eventually, I am left with only an empty room and my deep breathing.
This particular session I noticed that each and every thought I seemed to address had something to do with pregnancy. This combined with the hibernation and isolation that comes with the first trimester of pregnancy had me suddenly feeling suspicious of myself. "Oh no! You are going to become a one-note mother that has no life or identity outside of her children!" I have spent so many years working on knowing myself, doing the psychological and spiritual work that my soul deemed necessary before procreation was possible. I was NOT (hear me say this!) working on extracting vice from myself pre-parenting so that I wouldn't fuck up my kids. That was never my goal, and by the way, I think it's nigh impossible NOT to fuck up your children in some regard. I am not aiming for personal perfection. Instead, I wanted to understand myself better and better. So I've done all this work to make sure I have a strong sense of self and now, at the prospect of pregnancy, child-birth, and child-rearing, I have no other thoughts?
Joel and I waited 9 years to have children, and it will be closer to 10 by the time this little sucker pops out. My fears have all been addressed, and I doubt you will find a couple who has done more tenacious emotional work before becoming parents. Sure, we have very minimal amount in savings, owe on credit, and don't own a house...but these things were never important to me. Financial security comes and goes, it is emotional security that a child really needs and what we have spent our time investing in.
What scared me about this particular mediation's revelation was that I had seemingly ALREADY lost myself. I didn't care to write or journal or nest or so much of anything else I loved. Note: this was LARGELY due to the fact that I could barely move with fatigue and nausea. But now that I am coming out of those symptoms (I hope!), I wonder what of my old hobbies and purposes will be recovered or if they will pale in comparison to the crazy thing happening inside of me, and here's the real question:
Should I let it?
Why do we want to hold on to previous versions of ourselves? Is it because it's what we know? Is it fear that keeps us from accepting personal evolution? I had determined to never lose myself when I became mother, but in the end, how many of us actually get to decide who we become? Becoming a mother means a new evolution of Candace, and while she will certainly retain the core of herself, new things will birth. Will I let myself be? Or will I censure myself for becoming something I used to despise?
I've said on this blog several times that we are 10 different humans in any one lifetime. While I have plenty of aspirations as to the mother I want to be, what I am beginning to realize is that it's never helpful to the soul to be suspicious of oneself, and that the best kind of mother I can be is one that can let go of ideals and learn to accept what the universe hands her...even if it's a terry-cloth jogging suit worn in public. God help us.