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Thursday, July 22, 2010

Defining identity

I am working on finding my purpose during my time here on earth. In doing this I will be addressing four basic life issues over the next several days that will determine the significance, the success, and the satisfaction of my life.

The four basic life issues I will be addressing are: Defining identity, accepting responsibility, determining priorities, and choosing authority.

I am creating this process off of a sermon I recently listened to that was given by a pastor at The Promise, in Indianapolis. You can hear his sermon here if you are interested: Resolving Issues on Your Purpose.

If there is anything I know for certain it is that I do not have a clue exactly who I am. I do know the many bits and pieces of me quite well, but I have not put the puzzle together yet.

I am this earthly creature who has great empathy for the world and it's inhabitants.

I am a wife who struggles to understand marriage, and how to be a happy wife.

I am a mother of four who will always dedicate her life, in part, to serving her children.

I am, in my opinion, one of the greatest friends a person could ever ask for.

I am creative, organized, and talented.

I am unique.

I am aware of the universe. That is to say that I am in tune with nature, the stars, and am working to be more connected to the human lives all around me.

I am a very giving spirit, almost to a fault.

I'm all about doing the right thing, even if it's not what *I* want to do.

I am selfless and trustworthy. When I say I am trustworthy I mean you can trust me to be honest, and to be fully present when you need me.

I am spiritual. I am not religious. I am not here to debate my beliefs, or lack there of.

This is where I struggle. I have allowed a lot of stress to enter my life, unknowingly, as I have tried to be what I thought other people expected me to be. Wife, mother, employed, fit & active, trendy, giving, loving, available and open. The stress from being someone I am not, at times, has been very taxing to me.

From now on I am going to focus on not letting the voices of society enter my head. I may be a wife for the next 50 years. Maybe not. One thing I have decided is that I will not stay in an unfulfilled marriage for the rest of my life because society thinks I should, or because our family thinks my children deserve it. I will only stayed married if my husband and I can learn how to serve one another in the way that we should serve one another as human beings. I have to stop hanging around in unhappy places, and right now this is a big one. If my husband cannot meet my needs, and allow me to meet his needs as a team I see no reason to bang my head against the wall until my last dying breath. I'm not going to live that kind of life for him or anyone else. Our struggles are nothing that cannot be worked out. I need to see him put the same effort into this that I have. I need consistency, and commitment from him.

There are a lot of people trying to impress images upon us of what we are supposed to be. From the media, to our friends and neighbors. It is the driving force of why many people wear what they wear, say what they say, and feel how they feel. I don't think   I have fallen to far into this trap, but I have noticed little things here and there, and have worked on modifying my behavior.

I used to wear fake nails for my monthly moms night out dinners, and to every semi-special occasion. While I enjoy the look of my bitten nails all manicured and pretty, it's not something that is important to me. I look at these jagged nails every day. If it was important to me I would work on trying to stop biting my nails so that I could have a beautiful and natural manicure. Since it is not that important I vow to only manicure my nails for the big events, like a wedding or formal dance...because you know I attend a lot of formal dance. Just kidding! In all seriousness it is things like this where I struggle, no matter how minute. I worry about judgement from others when I know that their judgement is not relevant to my life. I need to stop making others opinions a priority in my life.

Often times I look at other families and I envy. I get trapped by their definition of success. Even if I get to the day where we can afford to take our children on expensive weekend get-a-ways, to multiple concerts each year, to every newly released movie, and so on...that does not define success.

I want to impress upon my children the idea that waiting is worth it. I'm on a good start here and I do not want to ruin that! I have already showed them how waiting for your hearts desire until it goes on sale, or better yet on clearance, is worth it. They have learned that sometimes the desire for that new movie, or piece of clothing wasn't really their desire. They just wanted it because someone else had it. Once the time came to buy it they realized that the didn't really want it anymore. Don't get me wrong. We have out little indulgences. When a Twilight series movie comes to theaters I am going to take my daughter to see it the week it is released because it's something we both enjoy together, and we've looked forward to seeing it as soon as we can. When the DVR is released I will take her out to the midnight release. It's something we can enjoy together and it's something we both have a genuine interest in. When she wanted the $20 Eclipse T-shirt...she waited. She waited and we ended up being able to get her 2 T-shirts for $3 each! It was worth the wait, and she agreed.

Success is being who and what you were created to be. While I may not believe in the Christian faith, I do believe that humans create. I've not yet decided where this gift comes from, and it's not important to me right now. I know that we create our own destiny by all of the choices we make, both big and small. If I want to be successful I am going to have to work on being me. I am going to work on serving the world with the skill set that I have. I'm going to have to let go of my focus on what others have and do and reorient that energy to who I am and what I do. I do a lot for this world. I do a lot for my family. I don't do very much for myself. I need to make myself a priority too. This is my greatest challenge.

I don't have to have other persons approval to be happy. If that mom doesn't like my daughter wearing black on black, looking like a criminal scurrying in the dark alleys at night, so what! I don't care. What I care about is seeing that daughter dressed like a Gothic princess serving the universe with graciousness and kindness.I care about her happiness. Her smile would be just as beautiful with black eyeliner (when she is old enough) as it would be with pink lip gloss. Actually no, it wouldn't. Her smile with black eyeliner would be more beautiful, because it would be her!

I'm turning over a new leaf today. I am going to be happy with who I am as I travel on this journey. My hearts desire is to live a more minimalist lifestyle, and I cannot do that if I am at all focused on what other people think. I wouldn't own 90% of what I own if it were not for what other people think I need. I don't need all of this. What I need is simplicity, peace, harmony, and joy. None of these worldly possessions give me that. They take away from it.

The time that I desire is tied up in taking care of the material possessions I own.
The peace I desire is broken up with noisy belongings, and even noisier people all around me.
The simplicity that I desire is consumed by chaotic clutter that I allowed into my life.
The harmony I desire is divided by drama, and being out of sync with the universe.
The joy I desire to give and receive is intercepted by toys on the floor, and commitments, and negativity, and foolishness.

I know who I am. I know, at my core, what I am all about. It's time to find the balance of me that fits into my family so that I can find my bliss and enjoy the bliss of my loved ones as well.

1 comment:

  1. Love this post, Lety. It's honest and real. I love your self-exploration and I love your desire and passion to grow and become. In this process, I hope you will also find just how much you already are who you are and tha tyou've maybe just disconnected.