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Friday, April 12, 2013

What is There to Like?

I am participating in a health and fitness challenge hosted by my friend Evelyn. It's almost the end of week 2. One of the challenges this week was to write a letter to yourself. I've been putting it off, but as the week is drawing to a close I'm thinking that I'd better get started. Don't worry, I won't write it here, but I've been trying to work through some thoughts before I get started.

This is the challenge:
Write a letter to yourself. (Include 5 things that you love about yourself, physically, emotionally, spiritually, etc. Identify NO MORE than 3 things you would like to change about yourself or your current life. This isn't about tearing yourself apart. This is an attempt to get in touch with YOU and to help you be aware of the good, the bad, and the soon to be good.)
As I wrote in an earlier post, I'm having a hard time thinking of things to like about myself lately. Which is really rather sad. I think that everyone should like themselves. This isn't about being humble, no one is going to read my letter but me. So why can't I come up with anything!?

I used to LOVE myself, no really. I don't mean to sound conceited, or self centered, but I was a hoot! I loved being me and I think that people genuinely enjoyed being around me, 'cause I was FUN!

I've been wondering what changed, and what caused the change. Since becoming a wife and mother I've had a bit of an identity-crisis. I am constantly trying to find my place and figure out just what my roles are.I know that now I am grown up and I have responsibilities. It is my job to raise and teach my children and I can't always be the light-hearted free spirit that I wish I was. But I still want to have fun!

I am more that just "Ryan's wife" or "______'s Mom" (Insert any one of my kids' names here.) I am still me, I am CARANNA - so what does that mean!?

Today marks the ten year anniversary of the day that my husband proposed to me. I have grown and changed a lot since that day 10 years ago. I have learned many lessons, some of those lessons were a lot harder than others, but would I really go back now? Having gained so much was it really at the cost of my former self?

When I was younger I was quick witted and funny. I found it easy to make jokes and make others laugh. I felt that I had a lot of talents, and I enjoyed sharing those with others. I enjoyed singing, acting and dancing. I was a pretty decent artist and often the life of the party. I had a strong belief in my faith, a strong testimony and a powerful conviction about what I believed. I was not ashamed of those beliefs and often shared them with others. I was a member of the seminary council in my senior year of high school and thoroughly enjoyed that. Plus, I got to be a member of the relief society presidency my very first semester of college.

I think one of my main problems is that I'm just too exhausted to care any more. I'm too tired to feel much conviction about anything. Everyday is more just a struggle to survive. I figure I'm doing good if I make it from breakfast to bed time each day.

Perhaps I just need to find my passion, and maybe remembering how "cool" I used to be is the key to unlocking that in my current situation.

The year after I got married we attended a family reunion, I had a 2 month old baby at the time. They were trying to get enough family members together for a "talent show" to fill one of the evenings, but there weren't many volunteers. One of my cousins approached me to ask if I would lead the group in singing silly camp songs. My Aunt, who lived in the same town as me, and had thus spent a lot of time with me in the year since my marriage, answered for me before I had a chance. Shaking her head and saying, "Oh she's no fun any more. She got all old and boring!"

I know that the comment was made in jest, and I love my Auntie, but it still stung. I too felt that I had become "old and boring" and I've never quite recovered. As I've gone from one child to five I think I've just got older and boring-er. I'm not sure how to fix it, but I want to!

Here's a picture of Ryan and I at my parent's house when we were engaged, before I was so "old and boring." We were making breakfast. (Digital cameras have come a long way in the last 10 years.)


Lisa said...

You know I have been having the same crisis for quite some time. At least, until I discovered pinterest and, by extension, a quote that changed my view. I suffer from clinical depression, which has robbed a lot of happiness from last 9 years. So this quote struck a bit deeper. I shared it with the group as my motivation, but this is much more where it belongs. It is "be happy where you are, even if you know you want to change." Good luck finding happiness in where you are! :)

Hillori said...

I love what your friend Lisa said...wise words. Caranna, you are such a WONDERFUL person. Remember that life has it's phases, and we should not define ourself by just one part of our life, and each part of our lives have equal parts pros and cons, sometimes when we are in the trenches it is hard to see that the grass is not always greener on the other side. And by the way, I don't think you are boring! :)