Please believe me when I say I'm not complaining, really I'm not, but I swear something happened in the act of giving birth that made my life suddenly stop being about me. I am beyond blessed to have moments/days/weekends that are about me (whereas many mothers get no such thing) - but for the most part I feel as if I have put my own wants and desires on hold for the good of the many (or few, as I'll later reveal). In fact, as I sit here typing, I'm not even sure what my wants and desires are (besides cookies and LOTS of sleep). Even my personal desires seem to revolve around a greater family plan. That was definitely not the case 5 years ago. My greatest desire for many years (starting in the 8th grade, in fact) was a trip to Europe. And I came so close, right before discovering I was pregnant. But even that dream seems to sit in a clouded haze. So completely unattainable a part of me is just wishing for it in the next life. And on the whole I am completely okay with that. But there are moments, sometimes brief, sometimes lasting days, that I am overwhelmed with the burden of reality. That reality being that my life is no longer about me. And while I do my very best to keep it all in perspective, sometimes my resentment spills over the healthy line.
I had an epiphany a few weeks ago. It was that we are all guided by one major factor. That factor differs for everyone. Some are motivated by money. Others to sever themselves from their past. Still others are motivated by a desire for success, education, love, security or worldly experiences. But behind each and every one of us there is one desire that dictates a large majority of our decisions and actions. My whole life's motivation can be traced back to a moment when I was 4 years old, when my mom informed me that she was leaving my father. The idea resurfaced many, many times until I voiced it distinctly when I was around 12. As my parents yelled, slammed and broke their way through our living room, I became a young Scarlett O'Hara that evening when I swore: "As God is my witness I will one day have a happy home. I will be a strong woman who sticks up for myself, with a husband who doesn't break, slam, yell or resent me. I will raise a child without fear and without guilt. And I will let no person come between that, if it's the last thing I ever do."
And as my resentment sometimes grows, I remind myself of my motivator. Of why I do the things I do and why I expend effort until I am out of energy. Until I am cursed, disliked and disrespected. It is all in protection of my happy home. Happy homes don't come easy - it's why they are so few. It takes energy, communication, sacrifice and countless battles. It may seem contradictory, but you must fight like hell for a happy home. And when all is said and done, I will continue to fight. I will continue to defend and sacrifice. I will continue this life that is not motivated by my own personal desires, but by my idea of a happy home. For myself, for my daughter and husband and for my extended family. Because in my home, the good of the few outweighs the good of the many, as well as the good for myself. And at the end of the day I would have it no other way.