I felt a sense of belonging when I became a mother - not instantly - but I did when the small ghost of myself vanished.
It’s not like I never felt like I belonged before, but this was different.
I’ve lived in different cities and counties, never stayed put in one home for long, my friends aren’t just one big group, but various wonderful people I’ve met from either school, different work places, cities, travels, and now through being a mum. And I don’t see my friends anywhere near as often but the friendships that have remained are stronger than ever.
I think I spent a long time getting to know myself as an individual, then in a relationship and then again as a mother. I think I know this version the best (though it took the longest to get to know her).
I finally addressed a lot of things about myself that I didn’t before, like parts of my upbringing, the anxiety I was experiencing, just a lot of truth and honesty settled within me, which was beautiful and confronting. I still worry, but I don’t have time to worry about bullshit anymore. So that’s a plus.
I still yell when I’m overwhelmed sometimes, I remember about their big emotions, that they’ve been on this earth less than 5 years, that If I’m still trying to get my emotions in check then they deserve my patience.
I still have niggling feelings of uncertainty and I’m not always sure where it comes from, but I also exude a kind of confidence I didn’t have before of my place, my voice, my reason.
This is by no means saying I didn’t have these things before. But for me it was different. It’s finding home in a laugh, a cuddle or their ever changing faces.
It’s been the slowest and fastest few years, and at times where I’ve felt like I’ve done absolutely nothing it also feels like I’ve lived a hundred lives. Maybe not travelling the world like I dreamed of, but growing in ways I’d never dreamed of.
It’s the hardest thing I’ve ever done, and
it’s easier to talk about that sometimes, but if someone asks me the best part, it’s the simple belonging.
I belong here the most.
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