Warning: Deep honesty and self-reflection ahead. You may want to turn back now.
It’s amazing to me how quickly an individual can change in such a short amount of time. Four years ago I was a totally different person than I am today.
Four years ago I had just married my husband – and as stuck-up as this sounds – I was determined to be the “best” of the police wives. I was going to be successful, kind, healthy…. the type of wife that when the guys talked would make the other officers think, ‘Dang, Bryson is so lucky.’
So, I started doing daily devotionals, prayed in the morning and at night, did something daily for me. I joined the gym and started working out. The feeling of lifting weights, cardio, waking up sore the next day was like a drug to me. (Although if anyone would ask, I put on the “It’s horrible, I have to ‘make’ myself do it” attitude.) I would eat fresh vegetables and fruit for lunch. Drink tons of water, watched the amount of sweets that I ate, and meal planned. Dinners were homemade and balanced. Often full meals were delivered to the police department for anyone on duty. I dressed nicely each day. Our home was tidy and clean. And I loved it. I loved being the type of wife that my husband deserved. I loved myself.
But things have changed, I lost sight of who I am.
Circumstances have changed, people develop, blah…blah…blah…I’ve heard it, I know it, I get it. But I miss me. I feel unbalanced.
The other day, I did a 30 minute walking workout tape (YES…A WALKING TAPE) and I felt like I was going to pass out. Vegetables? Hahahahaha I honestly couldn’t tell you the last time I cooked a vegetable. Dinners for the past (how old is my daughter?) two years have (for the majority) come from a paper bag. Cooking leads to dirty dishes, dirty dishes lead to me having to do them, and that leads to me being bitter that even though I’m not the only one who ate, I am the only one who cleans it up. Clothes are piled in laundry baskets around my house. While I sit in sweats that, if I am honest, are too tight and uncomfortable. I’m a mess and I don’t care enough to do anything about it. I’m not a wife that my husband can be proud of. Most days I can barely look in the mirror.
So why put all of that out for the world? Frankly, I’m scared. I’m terrified that if I don’t find myself soon I will be lost forever. But where do I start? With so far to go to get back to
me how do I start? What if I fail…again. Google “Find yourself again” and tips/steps to follow will pop up like crazy. As though an internet “how to” will magically “fix” everything.
People will say, “You’re fine Laura” or “You’re over thinking things.”I learned early in life that outward appearances don’t tell half the story. To keep things hidden, don’t share your true self, and be who they want you to be. So I do.
Life has taught me to follow along, fit in. When everyone is venting, I complain about my husband and immediately feel a sense of guilt and betrayal. Diets? Sure I’ll say I’m on one, only to stuff myself with junk whenever I’m home. Being a ‘control freak?’ You betcha, as long as you don’t know that I am barely grasping at straws the majority of the time. Teacher who loves her students? Of course I am! Until the doors are closed and a feeling of dread, gloom, and despair fill me so deep it is hard to break through.
There have been a few times when the surface has cracked. When life becomes so much that I can’t keep face. Comments slip out, I lose control, and I regret every.single.time. that has happened.
One of these times happened right after we were married. We had found out we are expecting, but not really. For three weeks the doctors went back and forth on if I truly was pregnant. They couldn’t figure out what was happening. At the same time, Bryson’s Aunt had passed away and we were left in charge of her hoarded duplex. I kept it together for three weeks. Then one day we found out that yes, we were pregnant. No, the baby wouldn’t survive and we had to terminate the pregnancy for my safety. That has been my biggest crack. I was starting in Cameron the same month, and I would blurt out “I’m dealing with an ectopic pregnancy.” to anyone. I don’t remember saying it. I know I did because the awkwardness of it comes up a lot. If people bring it up, I laugh. “Sure I say things I shouldn’t – awkward Laura!” But inside, I am mortified. I was going through something that to me is still traumatic. I can’t think about that time in my life without cracking, without wanting to go and hide. But I laugh….silly me, saying things I shouldn’t!
So I find myself now wanting to go back to me, without ever having truly been me. A journey it is. A clear slate, Wiki’s Step 4 in finding yourself again:
Prepare to begin again with a clean slate:
- This step may take some major rehabilitation for some individuals but putting it into the too-hard basket won’t make it go away. Remember, you can’t drive your life forward if you are always gazing through your rear-view mirror!
Thanks Wiki for the advice, I’m sure it will be as easy as you tell me!
I will try to find balance by finding my true self. Failure? More than likely. Success? Slim…oh so slim. But those that I love deserve me to take the chance. I deserve the chance.