By Molly Duteau
She was unhappy.
Unhappy with her body. She wanted to lose the 30 pounds she had gained over the years of birthing three kids.
She was tired.
She had so much more energy before. Now, there was so much more to juggle and keep track of that it was taking a mental and physical toll. Making time for herself seemed an impossibility. She would finally give in to the day and fall into bed at 1 A.M. only to rise again at 5 A.M. and repeat.
As her life coach, it’s my job to peel back the layers of body armor we all put on to survive and understand her truth. Her focus on the past and what once was was clear, but I needed more clarity on what she wanted for her future.
I asked her, “What are you trying to get back?”
There is a grieving process for mothers (and fathers too). There’s a letting go of what once was. Motherhood changes us in ways that no one can prepare for or even predict.
There are times when our anguish brings us to our knees in the middle of the night when our child is screaming and won’t stop, or the frantic call to our spouse when our kids go missing at Target – Code Adam!
There are times our heart overflows, overflows with more love than we knew we’d even had stored up. From those very first smiles as a baby (the ones that don’t come from gas!) to the letting go of the bike seat as she yells, “I got it! I got it!” The goodbyes at drop-offs when we hold the hugs a little tighter and to the anticipation of moving him into his dorm and meeting his first love.
In each of these moments, we let go of a little bit more and evolve. We often thrash between what we once were and who we want to be.
The struggle is in holding on to the past…to what once was, what could have been, or what was lost.
Her reply, a sigh.
“I suppose I’m trying to get back some of the freedom I once had. To be able to choose how I want to spend the minutes and hours of my days.”
“And what’s causing you to not have a choice now?” I asked
“Ultimately me,” she said with another sigh. “I get so caught up in what other people need of me that I don’t take the initiative to plan or do the things that I want to do.”
I asked, “And what would some of those things be?”
“Go for a walk or run every day. Go visit with my girlfriends,” she replied.
The list went on.
It’s common to hear women get caught up in the restrictions, limits, and reasons why we can’t do something. The laundry list of I gotta’s. But when we shift our thinking into the future, what we need and want, and planning for those, we lose the struggle. And we’re NOT meant to do it alone.
Creating abundance. Instead of focusing on the lack of what she didn’t have, she chose to focus on what she wanted more of. It’s amazing how energizing it is to give attention to that which fuels you.
My client made some intentional changes to her daily pattern. She no longer focused on getting back to what she once was or had, but on a new beginning of how to live life differently. A new normal.
And yes, she created some healthier habits of daily exercise, eating better, and getting more rest. But she also chose peace for the future she was creating for herself.
What do you need more of in your life?