Letting Go of What Used to Be and Embracing What Is

Today I have plagued with a touch of sadness of what used to be. I’d get up, get ready, go to work and come home and do whatever I felt like doing. Sometimes going to yoga, sometimes watching TV and sometimes talking for hours on the phone with girlfriends in other cities.

I’d also work on school projects and connect with other teachers about lessons for my class and respond to emails from families.

Connecting with others through blogging and social media online and in person were some of my favorite things to do. Who doesn’t love a long lunch or an extended happy hour?

The only thing controlling my time and how I spent it was me.

Even my husband didn’t make a lot of demands on my time. We somehow fell into a comfortable flow of me time, them time and our time over the course of our decade and a half long relationship.

Fast forward a month + into parenthood and it’s dawning on me that I’m not the one in charge anymore. In order for me to meet the needs of my family I need to simply be available to them when they need me. And for now, they need me most of the time.

While I am no longer able to be spontaneous and available to others, I am answering the call of a little dependent person. Something I’ve never done before.

I feel like I am disappointing others because things are not what they used to be and I’m sad to have to let go of my identity of always reliable go-to friend and feel a bit disappointed in myself for not being able to have things like they were.

And yet, really happy to have my new role as mama.

For now  – I am increasing my tolerance for other people’s disappointment. {The words of my lovely friend Michelle from Love Wasting Time}

So I am trying to let go of what used to be and embracing what is and trying not to contribute to my own suffering for wanting things to be any different than what they are.

I am hoping this isn’t sounding like a whiny rant or a plea for sympathy, I am just noticing a huge, yet subtle change in my life and thought I would share.

How do you embrace change in your life?

How did you transition into your role as a parent?

10 thoughts on “Letting Go of What Used to Be and Embracing What Is

  1. Pingback: Saturday Senses « Teacher Goes Back to School

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  4. Thank you for your honesty, and this gorgeous, heartfelt post. It is so heartening to have Mothers around who don’t shy away from expressing the challenges that are found in the path.

    On another note, check your f/b inbox, let’s get this party started!

  5. Tami,

    I really love how you are embracing your new life, yet acknowledging the pains that come along with change. I don’t have kids, so I can’t give advice from experience, but, I think that you doing a great job with being a new mom and make sure to give yourself kudos everyday. :)

  6. Good for you for acknowledging these changes and working to accept them. Acceptance can be hard, but so much easier when you take the time to notice what’s happening.

  7. Oh my dear friend.. welcome to the greatparadoxes of parenthood. having children is magical and suffocating. You give of yourself which feels amazing and like you’ve been exposed to leeches. nothing is sacred, nothing is private and nothing is yours… not your sleep, your time or your space, yet you still want to share it all!

    But here’s the little secret they forgot to tell you: this is the really hard part. Soon that sweet little munchkin will start having some independence and amazingly, you will find ways to assert yours as well. your lives will still be intertwined (you KNOW this by reading my blog after all), but you will find your space again. the shape of the space will have changed, the amount of time and the silence as well, but baby it is still there.

    Leslie Kaminoff talks about breathing as changing the shape of space. You inhale and your abdominal space expands, you exhale and it contracts. Motherhood is the same… some days you expand and find you are so able to stretch your own self, others you contract and have to share it with your family. Amazingly like breath it is also vital to your life now….

    hugs, from a mom/yogi/teacher at a different stage of hard ;-)

  8. that grief ebbs and flows with me, after almost 8 years of mamahood. sometimes it has to do with friendships, sometimes (like today) it has to do with the loss of my “maiden” body and the permanent stay of my mama body, sometimes it has to do with husband or me time. the thing i keep learning over and over is that my kids keep changing, what and how much they need keeps changing. every few months at least there seems to be a “new normal.” so even though i feel like i’ve completely transitioned to being a parent, what it means for me to *be* a parent is always changing. the way i deal with it varies, but i try to make mindfulness, living each moment, trying to do more good than harm be the big framework.

  9. That all rings oh so true. I know that I did sometimes mourn what once was, and yet, truly love my new role and the new normal. then, after 3 1/2 years of being a family of 3, we were suddenly 4 (okay, perhaps not so suddenly, but still), and I had moments of mourning how it was when it was just we three.

    Now, with my littles being not as little (Irene is nearly 12 and Rhys is nearly 8 1/2), there are still times when I think about how it used to be. There are still days that I would like to *not* be the one in charge, but really? It’s a BIG part of who I am.

    There were a few friends that did fall by the wayside. It was hard for them to share their time and I couldn’t NOT share my time.

    Hell, I’ve totally lost track of where I was going with this – but know that this feeling you are having is totally normal.

  10. Gosh, this is beautiful. I always find transitions difficult, much less such a big (albeit welcome) one as this. What helps me most is doing what you’ve done here — acknowledging it exists. In the past, I’d ignore change or tell myself I like it instead of just giving myself space to say that, even when change is wanted, it’s challenging. I find that the extra space gives me room to breathe, physically and emotionally, and from there I’m better able to adjust and find my ‘new normal,’ as I recently heard someone describe this process.

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