As I sat on my bed under a pile of clothes with a newborn laying next to me, sore breasts and a dread for work the next day it hit me.
Who was this woman staring me in the face in the closet mirror?
I was 25 with two kids, a husband of nearly six years, a job I disliked… no friends close in distance and no hobbies to keep me busy in my spare time.
I got up in the mornings before anyone else and pumped. Prepared lunches, the breast pump bag, diaper bag. Placed clothes out to wear for everyone. Cleaned up the house and put dinner in the fridge.
I went to work and came home to cook dinner, bathe kids and get them tucked into bed for the night.
If I was lucky I got two hours a day with my kids and an hour a day alone with my husband.
I felt lost and couldn’t remember what made me me before kids and before my husband.
I didn’t remember because I had gotten married and had children so young. This isn’t something I regret but it made that discovery phase a little harder.
How do I dig into this new identity and find the woman who was there before?
Motherhood Means Evolving
Motherhood doesn’t mean your individual pre-mom self isn’t there. The woman that was me before I had kids was in there but she changed.
There is a new layer to the identity of this woman staring me in the face and quite frankly I’m happy about that.
Let me explain because finding purpose in your motherhood is going to take you on a journey of self-discovery.
Finding Joy in the Mundane
Despite this new layer of identity, there is joy in your everyday. Just because you are now saddled with keeping tabs on the contents of your fridge, washing laundry, running errands, kissing boo-boos and even wiping butts doesn’t mean you can’t find joy.
It might take a little bit of work. It did for me.
It’s a mindset thing really. Finding purpose in your motherhood will take a change in perspective.
When I’m sitting doing laundry I look at the clothing I’m folding and try to think back to the memories that were made in those clothes.
I remember the laughs we had while eating the meal I’m now cleaning up.
I no longer look at messy bedrooms as a thing of stress, I look at it as memories my kids will remember because they had such a great time.
You see finding joy in the mundane will take a little bit of work to look past the things that immediately stress you out.
Dig deeper and find joy in the messy crayon disaster on your dining room table.
It will help you to get to know the woman inside of you. The new layer that was added on when you had children.
Breaking the Identity Box
You’ve probably put yourself in this identity box and haven’t even realized it. You’re a maid, taxi driver, prep cook and story reader.
Because we live in this busy world of go go go we have become accustomed to only seeing what is right in front of us.
You see the laundry piles and food that needs cooked but not the woman doing it.
How do you break out of it that identity box?
Discover your passions again.
Taking time for yourself is so important. Especially in this day where moms are supposed to be the go-to gal for everything.
Need bandaids? Mom knows where they are.
Need that permission slip? Mom knows where it’s at.
Putting all of that aside and allow yourself to remember the days when you loved to take pictures or draw. Pick up the drawing pad and start sketching the joy on your children’s faces.
Remember the days when you enjoying going to the gym. Make time for it. Dedicate time to your body so you can get in tune with it.
Go on a girls dinner date. Cultivating friendships is important throughout motherhood because your husband isn’t going to understand the joy or guilt you’re feeling but your mom friends will.
Pick up that old hobby and see if it sparks joy in your heart still.
Find the woman inside of you that is enough. Doing so will help you to break the identity box you’ve put yourself in.
Embracing the Woman Inside
Without this new layer of identity, you wouldn’t be the woman you are right now. Each layer you’ve added has further deepened the woman that you are today. The mom and wife you’ve become.
You are enough. You just have to find it within yourself to be happy again. No one else can make you happy and no one else can break the identity box that you may be in.
Finding purpose in your motherhood will take work on your part. I promise you it’s worth it.
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Affirmations for Motherhood
Breathe life into your journey through motherhood with these affirmations.