Today’s Gift

 

I came across the quote below today and it hit me that I have been pulling back from life.  So 2015 for me will be a year to identify and face my fears.

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“There are two basic motivating forces: fear and love. When we are afraid, we pull back from life. When we are in love, we open to all that life has to offer with passion, excitement, and acceptance. We need to learn to love ourselves first, in all our glory and our imperfections. If we cannot love ourselves, we cannot fully open to our ability to love others or our potential to create. Evolution and all hopes for a better world rest in the fearlessness and open-hearted vision of people who embrace life.” ― John Lennon

(Please forgive me if the quote is not accurate.  I typically like to check first before sharing, but today affords me no time.)

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Finding a Place for Me

It’s becoming clearer to me that, as the years go by, I am becoming a more and more of a rare bird. Not that I’m saying I’m totally unique. There are other childless not by choice stepmoms out there, but it’s hard for us to find each other online, let alone flock together.

After receiving a second baby shower invitation yesterday – making it two baby showers scheduled for February – I tried to fight the sinking feeling that all, if not most, of my immediate social circle was now crossed over – not a one of them has any children over 6 years-old. The depression began to surface along with the realization that things will not be the same with any of these people again.  Most get-togethers will be child-centric.  All conversation will be child or mothering-focused. I wondered, just how the heck am I fitting into this picture anymore?

Here I am.  No children of my own. With older stepchildren (23 and 17). (Let’s not even explore the fact that none of them can truly understand the complexities of the step relationship.) What have I got to add to this clambake? Can my heart even take being around all these “mommies”?

Don’t get me wrong.  These are wonderful, sweet people and I love them, but the breadth of shared experience is shrinking between me and them, and I’m starting to feel less and less “in-place.”

“We need to find friends our age without kids,” I said to Hubs as I tossed the pink and brown invitation on the counter.  Hubs sighed and nodded in agreement.   The fact is, I’ve known that this has been coming for a while now, and I’ve searched in vain for a place to find people more like me.  But a search for childless stepmoms on Meetup.com doesn’t exactly produce results.

So how do I find it?  That place for me?  A safe place to spread my wings and learn to grow and heal, so it’s not painful to be around all the moms?  I guess this has become my mission for 2015.  Wish me luck.