Friday, January 11, 2013

WHERE IS MANDI?

[Rewinding to 09/12/12]

Reading through the archives of my blog is interesting to me. I started and stopped and started again, at the beginning of a beautiful time in my life. With my soul mate, living in the burbs. Very quickly, we integrated ourselves with our new neighborhood and the neighbors. We made friends and were absolutely intoxicated by the possibilities every time we stepped out our front door.

My blog was always meant to be a side project. A place to put down all the thoughts in my head about my experiences, travels, pregnancy and being a mom. My kids and my husband are the apex of my thoughts and the blog is a direct reflection of my growth and change as a woman. I make no excuses for being so caught up in my role as mother. It is my most beloved thing I’ve ever done. I think about my kids and talk about my kids and most of my world revolves around my kids. This is where my head is and I embrace it.

Every so often when I haven’t posted in a few days, I get an email in my inbox, “Do you still write here?” “I miss your posts and wish you’d write more.” I, too, wish I’d write more.  But time gets the best of me.  The best of us all.  And at times, it's easier to post a picture or two just to prove my blog is still alive.

I wonder though…if I had had a blog in my teens, what would I have written about? Living with my best friends? My infatuation with music? My cat? My fish? Starting a career in corporate America? Books, or food, or books on food? Vintage dresses? World travels? I have talked on end about all of these topics when they were the most significant to my life experience at that time, but they pale in comparison to my life NOW. My pursuits at the moment are primarily kid related. My passion is motherhood and wifery, and so that’s what I write about. and tweet about. and Instagram about… a lot.

An old fling found me on Instagram earlier this year. We lost touch, as people often do, and he left a comment, “Wow, you have three kids now?” I wondered for a second, that while he scrolled through the dozens and dozens of photos of my family if he recognized any glimmer of the girl he used to ride around with in his jeep, blaring obscure indie music, tanned skin, bruised shins, uber long blonde locks blowing in the wind?

Where is the Mandi who didn’t EVER not smile? That carefree spirit who never worried about tomorrow?Who could survive on pizza and raman? Who changed her college major 4 times? Who was a total music geek, and went to listen to local bands every single weekend? The Mandi who was up for any adventure, adaptable and optimistic? Would people that knew me then, recognize me now? Does she still exist?

I know the answer is that she does. She’s here. In the scar on my knee from climbing in my bedroom window after I got locked out at 2am. She is here in the laugh lines that seem be taking up permanent residency on my face. She is here in the giggly girl I turn into after two glasses of red wine. She is here in a career I’ve built that helps supports a family of five. She is here in a loving marriage that I’ve spent the last three four years growing with Pete. She is here in some of my favorite memories and my dreams for the future and undoubtedly, she is responsible for the adventure seeking nature that grows within Keegan…the analyst that exists within Bailey…and the hungry hungry caterpillar that is Reef.

It’s no secret that I really love being a mom. And a wife. This entire blog is dedicated to the experience. I am proud of all the ways it has forced me outside of my comfort zone. The ways it has taught me love, fortitude, valor, and creativity on a level I could have never imagined. I don’t get a lot of time to myself these days. There are few hours to put towards those passions and individual experiences that do not involve my family and I am more inflexible than I have ever been in my life. All of these things make up my reality now and it is reflected over and over again in what I share.

I am utterly aware that I have a finite amount of time while my children are tiny. Their future friends and partners and life experiences are all waiting for a piece of their attention. They need so much from me right now but the day will come when I find myself again with time to spare, side projects to start and new passions to explore. Until then, I’m throwing everything I’ve got at this. I’m soaking up this time to exist as the center of their worlds. I haven’t lost myself completely to motherhood, but I sure as hell am enjoying being consumed with it.

When this small window of time draws to a close and my growing children are a blur through my door and out it again, I will call upon the girl of my twenties, the woman of my thirties and the self I haven’t even become yet to widen my focus. It is a strange thing to grow up. To watch as the responsibilities multiply and the free time diminishes. To exist at an age where you are every bit an adult but so much of you still feels like you are eighteen and clueless. I am all of contradiction and conviction, lost and purposeful… but I am trying to live each phase of my life in a way that feels right to me.

Who I was. Who I am. Who I will be. As the Chinese proverb goes “The journey is the reward”






Song: Good Life   Artist: One Republic

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3 comments:

  1. you have me crying happy tears. thank you.

    ReplyDelete
  2. You have spoken for so many women in the midst of their motherhood. Thank you for the wonderful reminder!

    ReplyDelete
  3. This is a wonderful post. I truly enjoyed reading this, about your journey.

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I am incredibly grateful for your comment! I will respond as soon as possible. XOXO, Mandi

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