I yelled downstairs to the basement “Hey, do you mind if I dry my hair?” His response “No. Lord woman, dry your hair! We’re good.” I stood there, in the hallway, staring at my Agreeable Gray walls thinking to myself “Did I really just ask if it was okay to dry my hair? Who the f*$k am I?” It wasn’t the first time I’ve asked for permission and internally scolded myself it after the words had escaped my mouth. I do all the time now that I’m sitting down writing this. I ask if it’s okay for me to go to the gym. If it’s okay for me to go to the grocery store. Does anyone mind if I go take a shower. Is it alright if I go out to dinner with my friends. I’m asking permission a lot these days.
I quit my job recently and am staying at home with the girls. I wonder if I feel like indebted for the ability to spend my days chasing, living, watching, and loving, while he goes to work and is forced to hold the financial burden for our family. I haven’t completely left it all up to him. I’m still making money (no, not on this blog, don’t worry), just not like I used to. And I mean listen, this whole raising kids / stay-at-home mom thing is seriously no joke. I’ve only being doing it a month and I contemplate drinking, at noon, no less than twice in a five-day period. *GIVE ME ALL THE DRINKS* But maybe that’s it. Maybe I feel like I don’t do enough? Like I pushing things on to him when I know he wants to relax as well after a long work week. I don’t know. I just know the old Megan would never “ask permission.” No, she would make statements like “I’m going upstairs to dry my hair.” And then would move about her day.
It’s so hard to grace that line between permission and notification. I want to be sensitive to his needs. I want to be understanding. I want us to share responsibility. I want him to feel like I’m not demanding, but instead being thoughtful. But I also don’t want this to become a habit, because it will be a terrible one to break. I also don’t want the girls to think you have to ask to take a shower. And please know that my husband is really the most thoughtful man. He will encourage me to just leave the house by myself for a few hours. To go to the grocery store by myself. To head upstairs and get to bed while he picks up downstairs. He is not someone who wants me to ask for permission.
So then, I worry what if I become this meek woman? I imagine me with my head bowed, staring down at the floor, whispering requests for an outdoor excursion. He would despise that…I think. I know I would. Ugh I would hate myself. But that begs the question, right? Who am I becoming? Have I lost myself completely? Will I ever come back? Please know that this is all running through my brain as I stand in my bathroom, with my head turned upside down, blow dryer on full blast, hoping to get my hair fully dry in what in my mind I see as an “acceptable time” to be away from our children.
And then, then I walk downstairs and I hear my husband and our oldest daughter playing. I smile, I chuckle, then I cry. Being a mom is hard. I’m putting undue pressure on myself and on my husband. He’s not expecting me to ask for his permission. I’m doing that. He tells me multiple times a week how proud and thankful he is I made the decision to stay home with our children. That man loves making memories with those two, any chance he can get. So he doesn’t even think twice when I take some time to myself. Instead, he encourages it.
I guess I’m writing all of this because I feel like we, as women and/or moms, tend to hold ourselves to unreal expectations or maybe it’s just me. I don’t know. It just feels like I’m putting so much pressure on myself to be everything. But no one else wants me to be everything. It’s just me. I haven’t lost myself, I’m a new version of myself. I need to get out of my brain and just be me. Stop worrying that I got “more time to myself this weekend than he did” and just live. Just find the joy in everything I’m doing, including drying my hair once a week, and live. Because if this were all gone, who would I be? Where would go? What would I do? I would be lost. So, right here, right now, this is where I want to be, what I want to do, and who I have become. I wish the same for you.
This is a journey. Embrace the ride.
Find your new you. Embrace her.
Don’t lose sight of why you married that man. Embrace him every chance you get.
Lose the false expectations. Embrace reality.
Look at you in the mirror. Love her fiercely.
Love and Light,