Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Patterns and Priorities

What are the priorities in your life? Or maybe I should ask Who are the priorities in your life.

I ask because it's come up for me. As I adjust to the idea of my daughter moving across country, I realize my sense of self is shifting and so are my priorities. I'm realizing that as long as she's been living near me, these past two years, I've made her convenience a priority over mine. I've put plans on hold and not done things because she MIGHT want to see me. I've asked myself what would please her as opposed to what would please me.

Now I'm not saying I never want to do that! I do value my relationship with my daughter and I want to be willing to take her feelings and wishes into consideration. At the same time, though, I'm realizing that I've cheated BOTH of us by not giving at least equal weight to what I want and how I feel. I haven't given her a chance to know who I really am when I am fully ME.

It's also a shock to realize that I've been thinking I've thought about myself in terms of “Am I being a good enough mother?” as opposed to: “Am I being a good enough ME?” Already I find myself shifting back from focusing on my role as mother to my role as a professional in my field. I'm remembering that one of the greatest gifts I can give my daughter is to model the possibility of being happy and successful doing what one loves.

All of this reminds me to be aware of patterns in my life. To ask myself in what situations do I play out this pattern with other people as well? How might I want to change these patterns?

The great thing is that as I play with these questions, I open up the possibility for changes that will enhance not only my life, but the lives of those I care about as well.

So....what are the patterns and priorities in your life and do you want to play with the idea of changing any of them? Sending blessings and safe and gentle (((((((hugs))))))).



Just Be Real said...

April, I have an award waiting for you in the post "Just Be Real Award." Come by and take of it dear one!

Anonymous said...


I was wondering if you would be willing to blogroll my site about my own therapy-related experiences . . . ?? (Thank you in advance!)

- Marie

quacks like a duck said...

I think my teenage daughter's increasing maturity was one of the things that led me to therapy.
Things were pretty much all bad in my life when she was born, but there she was, perfect and dear. I made all kinds of HUGE changes in my life, including getting out of homelessness and poverty, getting a Bachelor's and then a Master's degree, moving 3000 miles away from my family... and all of it was done with her well being in mind.
I've been thinking lately that I might have started to do all this hard work on myself because she doesn't need me as much anymore... her need for me was what was holding me up. I think I was feeling really lost without it.
Anyway, kind of a random thought there...

jumpinginpuddles said...

i think we can always second guess ourselves but starting to change that is when you make the best progress

Marj aka Thriver said...

"Am I being a good enough ME?" What a wonderful question. It just figures that if I am a good enough Me, then I'm gonna be a good enough mother, wife, etc. Right? Cool!

Kahless said...

Good post.

I would like to put me first a bit more.

peppermint patty said...

Thank you April for bringing attention to patterns and priorities, and our (empowering) ability to change our own. Your questions are good ones to ask ourselves to assess our life goals.

I posted about the "true origins of mother's day" today and thought it would mean as much to you as it does to me. I hope to promote it so that more women will know and pass forward the history behind it from one generation to the next.

mile191 said...

“Am I being a good enough mother?” as opposed to: “Am I being a good enough ME?”

wow, your words. beautiful. thanks. i think of this all the time. i do hope that you are on your way to discovering who me is and being happier being her. you are amazing, and have helped me so much. thanks for writing. mile191

Marj aka Thriver said...

Just thinkin' 'boutcha! :)

April_optimist said...

Just Be Real, Thank you! It means a great deal to me that you did.

Marie, Great website. I'm going to be adding it to my blogroll. (I have to write the html code since I haven't figured out how to switch over to the new format without losing all the old link.)

Quacks Like a Duck, GOOD FOR YOU!!! I, too, did a lot of the work I did for the sake of my kids--so that I could be sure I wouldn't replicate the patterns of my childhood with them. Now you get to make changes for YOU.

Jumping in Puddles, Learning to trust ourselves is HUGE.

Marj, Yup, being a good enough YOU is the best gift you can give everyone around you.

Kahless, And why not put yourself first more?

Peppermint Patty, I'll go take a look!

Mile 191, You're a blessing in my life, too.

April_optimist said...

Peppermint Patty,

I tried to figure out where the post on Mother's Day was but...it wasn't on the template blog (that I could find) and when I tried to click on your other blog it said invited readers only and that I haven't been invited....