anyone else ever feel like their life just got...replaced? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 24 Old 08-30-2010, 06:28 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Just need to vent a little here. I love & enjoy my toddler, who is by no means a difficult child. DH works reasonable hours and is generally great. I know I am lucky.

But I sometimes feel like the old me just got completely replaced. This is partly because we moved to a new city a couple months before DD's birth. Although we have some friends here, we never really developed a life here before becoming parents. I went from working FT to SAHM. Plus, we are renting a furnished rental, and we used to own a home. Got rid of a lot of stuff when we moved and put the rest in storage. DH doesn't seem to feel this as much as I do, but I still feel like home isn't really home. I don't really feel like myself much anymore...but mostly too busy to think about it.

I wouldn't say I'm unhappy...I'd describe myself as mostly contented...but I just don't remember what it's like to be me, so to speak. The air feels different in this city. It is strange to be here, still. Plus I feel like I am so focused on mothering that I've forgotten what it's like to be me/focus on me, even though I do take "me" time for a couple hours every week. It's like my whole mind has changed somehow. Does that make any sense?

Also, I think my husband fundamentally doesn't get it. He thinks "I work, she works" equating our work in his mind--and he helps out pretty equally at home--but I don't think he gets how absorbed my mind and emotions are by it. Whereas I feel like he gets to go be himself for eight hours a day, even if he has to answer to his bosses. His life is not quite as different. And I'd rather have my "job" than his, but still. I feel so different I barely remember who I am.
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#2 of 24 Old 08-31-2010, 12:36 AM - Thread Starter
 
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anyone? Bueller?
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#3 of 24 Old 08-31-2010, 12:45 AM
 
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Oh i can so relate.. its like you dont remember how to be separte from the JOB of parenting, and even though its enjoyable, and you love your kids with every fibre of your being.. you wonder what life would have been, or even just more simply what it would be like to just forget everything you have spinning around in your head on a daily basis for just an hour?

maybe im projecting here.. but it feels like you are on a stage somedays and cant get off to be the actor/actress who walked in?

i think based on your post this is a result of too many changes in too short a time?
huge hugs and I hope it becomes your more "normal" soon!

Me and DH, our crazy brood DS (11), DS (6) DD (2) DD (9 mos) and an intense dog. . Tea sipping, full time working, home-birthing, vegetarian mama!
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#4 of 24 Old 08-31-2010, 12:48 AM
 
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You described it really well! I feel like this a lot. You're not alone.

Have you seen the updated user agreement yet?
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#5 of 24 Old 09-02-2010, 03:48 AM
 
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I feel this way too. When did I become so grateful for Spongebob so I can get a few minutes alone? Will will we be able to go to a store again without carts to make sure my toddler doesn't run away? I feel like I'm a mom, a housewife, a wife, but I'm not ME anymore. I think a lot of it is the age of my child (a year and a half), being pregnant, hubby being gone more, etc. I just keep telling myself that I can still find small ways to incorporate "myself" back into my life, and that soon things will be less hectic and my children will (hopefully) be a little less "self absorbed" lol. But it's really hard when reclaiming yourself seems years away.
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#6 of 24 Old 09-02-2010, 05:28 AM
 
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OMG yes! For me, and I don't know if this true for everyone else, but I am constantly thinking about the kids. I mean, it's my 'leisure time' right now. The kids are in bed and here I am browing a parenting site! I constantly have my ears tuned in to the kids. Even if I'm doing something else and DS1 is just talking to himself I can't help but listen. After five years of listening I can't turn it off anymore! I find that sooooo draining.

Also, when DH goes to work he thinks about work. He talks to friends. He goes to the toilet in peace. When he comes home he thinks about the kids. I am all about the kids all the time.

I am also alot more serious when the kids are around. When it's just DH and I, I feel more carefree and like my old self but when the kids are around I'm always 'on'.

I do have to say though, with a 5yo and 2yo I am slowly being able to find myself again and have time to be Natalie rather than Mama and it is sooooo good! I think it should only get easier from now on. DS1 has just started schoool and DS2 will start kindy in a year or so and then I will have a couple of hours every day to myself to with what I please (hopefully!)

It's complicated.
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#7 of 24 Old 09-02-2010, 09:10 PM
 
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I can relate. I have just been starting to feel this more lately. DS turns 3 in 2 weeks, and there's another on the way in a few months. I feel like I have kind of lost my identity in motherhood. Like there is not much to me anymore, except being a mom. I love being a mom, and I love my son more than anything and I am grateful that I have been able to be home his whole life, but I am craving a break, some time off, some time for myself, a part of my life that is about me, and not meeting the needs of others. A hobby, or a job, or I don't know, something. But with another on the way, I know I have a couple more intensive mothering years ahead of me. I end up sometimes wishing for my child free days (although at that time I didn't enjoy them and couldn't wait to have a baby), and actually all in all I am a happier person since becoming a mother than I was before. But just the freedom, of doing whatever I wanted whenever I wanted to. Reading a book, watching a movie, sleeping in. These are all things I very rarely do anymore. We are also living in a city that is temporary. We moved for DH to finish school, and so we are moving again next year, so living somewhere where you know it is temporary is kind of strange. And we leave frequently, about once a month to stay with family in our hometown, and so in a way it never really feels like home here. I don't really know what to do with these feelings or realizations at this point, I know I am going to be staying as a full time sahm for the next year for sure.

Maria, wife to DH, mama to DS 09/2007, #2 12/2010 and hoping for a
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#8 of 24 Old 09-02-2010, 10:22 PM
 
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Originally Posted by tangledblue View Post
Just need to vent a little here. I love & enjoy my toddler, who is by no means a difficult child. DH works reasonable hours and is generally great. I know I am lucky.

But I sometimes feel like the old me just got completely replaced. This is partly because we moved to a new city a couple months before DD's birth. Although we have some friends here, we never really developed a life here before becoming parents. I went from working FT to SAHM. Plus, we are renting a furnished rental, and we used to own a home. Got rid of a lot of stuff when we moved and put the rest in storage. DH doesn't seem to feel this as much as I do, but I still feel like home isn't really home. I don't really feel like myself much anymore...but mostly too busy to think about it.

I wouldn't say I'm unhappy...I'd describe myself as mostly contented...but I just don't remember what it's like to be me, so to speak. The air feels different in this city. It is strange to be here, still. Plus I feel like I am so focused on mothering that I've forgotten what it's like to be me/focus on me, even though I do take "me" time for a couple hours every week. It's like my whole mind has changed somehow. Does that make any sense?

Also, I think my husband fundamentally doesn't get it. He thinks "I work, she works" equating our work in his mind--and he helps out pretty equally at home--but I don't think he gets how absorbed my mind and emotions are by it. Whereas I feel like he gets to go be himself for eight hours a day, even if he has to answer to his bosses. His life is not quite as different. And I'd rather have my "job" than his, but still. I feel so different I barely remember who I am.
Hugs to you!!!! I feel exactly the same way!!! It's gotten better over time, but I still feel like sometimes WHO AM I? what happened to the person who used to be me??? and I love being a Mom too but still...

oh, and my husband also doesn't get it. He claims he gets it, but I really don't think he does. I have tried to explain it to him so many times!!!!

Mommy to one adorable little boy and expecting another little bundle of joy in June 2011
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#9 of 24 Old 09-02-2010, 10:47 PM
 
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NAK

Yup. Right there.

My advice may not be appropriate for you. That's ok. You are just fine how you are and I am the right kind of me.

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#10 of 24 Old 09-08-2010, 01:29 AM
 
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Oh yes yes yes I totally relate!

I recommend reading this book called "The Way of Transition" by William Bridges. It REALLY helped me put words to what I was feeling and also made me realize that while I moved into a new chapter called "Motherhood" and a new chapter called "living in a new town....again...with no family or friend support..again" that it is important that I bring those things with me that identified me as me like burning incense, meditating, putting on classical music, reading a few pages of a good book before I turn the light off to go to bed, etc. These little things are pieces of me that I have always done many many chapters ago. And when I do these things (sometimes I forget ), I feel so GROUNDED in that moment. Like I feel as though I have come home.

So while you are not who you were and you are still working on who you are becoming, you can still bring pieces of you with you and use them to help create the new you.
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#11 of 24 Old 09-08-2010, 02:23 AM
 
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I too moved to a new town just as I became a new mother. And of course because the move was for DH's university job (and because we live in campus housing) my life is more empty of personal identity than it might otherwise be. I mean all of our neighbors are other professors or students. So when I introduce myself, even on the street I'm "so-and-so's wife." Yuuuuuck. And then they tell me how cute my kid is (which I can't deny ) and I feel invisible.

I want to scream "I have a master's degree! And a teaching credental! And a brain! And my own loves, fears and thoughts!!!" Sigh.

But I found a hobby recently that I enjoy so that helped. It soothes my inner hippie.
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#12 of 24 Old 09-10-2010, 07:09 PM
 
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Oh yes I totally relate!

Mom of 8 children 4 Boys : and 4 girls :2 dogs named Kibblez and Brook , sadly miss my Husband that passed 03/03/2007 !Trully Miss my Brother Joey that passed on 3/25/09..Sadly miss my dearest son T.J that passed 1/19/2014 forever in my heart!
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#13 of 24 Old 09-19-2010, 02:10 AM
 
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OH man can I relate....my children are older but Ive felt this way for a long time. It s only gotten more complicated as they need me less and DH travels more and more with his work. We are expats and move often...we are in Europe and have been for 2 yrs. We have no money worries, so what do I have to complain about? Im lonelyand feel beat down with my responsibilities of the house, pets, grocery shopping. Im a massage therpaist and yoga teacher..my friend told me last night she feels I have all these gifts but they are shut inside a box.
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#14 of 24 Old 09-19-2010, 11:08 AM
 
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((hugs)) i remember those days very very well......i can tell you that when they get older (and i mean in school all day 'older'), that it does get better. they become much more independent and you have more time to get back to 'you'....although the 'you' that you were before being a parent has often changed quite a bit by this point.

my kids are now 13 and 11, and i have been a SAHM most of their lives.....still am. i can now look back with much perspective on all the 'chaos' of those early years with babies, toddlers, and young elementary school kids and how i just felt lost in the mix. there comes a time when you sort of 'ease' out of that feeling. and even though i still SAH, i never feel like that anymore. i feel like i'm right where i'm supposed to be, enjoying my children when they're home, enjoying my husband/friends/hobbies/life when they're not. maybe it's a natural progression to prepare for the 'empty nest'?? not sure.

my advice is to hang in there. try and branch out and explore your new city and surroundings. make some new friends. as the kids go through each stage of their own lives, you are along for the ride and going through those stages too in your life. many many seasons ahead, so sit back, relax and enjoy each and every one!

: : vicki ~ wife & mom of 2 amazing kids
live well ~ laugh often ~ love much
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#15 of 24 Old 09-19-2010, 12:15 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chamomile Girl View Post
...I feel invisible.
I don't feel this way yet... but, I see how it can become this way.

I like to watch this as a reminder of why I am doing this - SAHM:

The Invisible Woman
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9YU0aNAHXP0

Super Mom.  Super Wife.  Super Tired.
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#16 of 24 Old 09-19-2010, 03:30 PM
 
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vm 9799 I agree with all you said...my situation is unique but for most, it does get easier as they get oldler and you have more time to rediscover both yourself AND your partner. Hang in there and come here often.xo
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#17 of 24 Old 09-19-2010, 10:47 PM
 
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There are days (OK, a lot of days) when I walk DD through the park and see people reading, sleeping in the sun, talking with friends, and I think "that used to be me". Or I go to the coffee shop and see people on their computer, or staring out the window, and think "I bet they don't have to go home, make supper, bathe a baby, and hope to get 3 hours' sleep in a row". I see my "old" life everywhere--and it often makes me sad, or at least nostalgic.

I do notice, though, that as DD gets a little older, it's a little easier to leave her with DH or my parents for awhile. And then we truly appreciate a good book, a movie, a night out, even an unhurried shower.

And I try to remind myself of the day I went to the coffee shop and enviously watched these 2 young girls, sitting down for coffee, chatting away. They had no naptimes to figure out, no sippy cup to pick up off the floor for the umpteeth time, no diapers to change. It made me miss my old life, the freedom I didn't even realize I had, until one girl told the other how hard it was dealing with her overwhelming thoughts of suicide.

I hugged my DD a little harder.

Woman, Wife, Mom to beautiful DD (10/14/09), Copywriter, occasionally tearing my hair out but usually pretty happy about it all
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#18 of 24 Old 09-20-2010, 10:22 AM
 
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Yes. I see people sitting relaxing, having coffee with a friend. Or sitting on a lawn chair relaxing in the sun. Meanwhile I am chasing my kids, or in a hurry to get home and *try* to catch up with housework. And I am jealous...I am jealous that these people get a break.

I am not the person I was before children. Nope. And I never will be that person again.......

I was a social person, I loved going out. Now....I am almost always overwhelmed, tired, and overworked. When I am exhausted, I don't get to lie down. When I am sick I don't get to rest. When I can't take the whining, or fighting between the girls...I don't get a break.

And if I did get a break for a coffee, the entire time I would be thinking about what I should be doing....
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#19 of 24 Old 09-20-2010, 11:04 AM
 
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I've been going through this, too. Feels like I'm searching for who I am but I don't know where to start.

Jenna ~ mommy to Sophia Elise idea.gif  (1/06), Oliver Matthew  blahblah.gif (7/07) and Avery Michael fly-by-nursing1.gif(3/10)

 

dizzy.gif Wading slowly and nervously into this homeschooling thing.

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#20 of 24 Old 09-20-2010, 02:06 PM
 
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Originally Posted by JonahRoo View Post
Oh yes yes yes I totally relate!

I recommend reading this book called "The Way of Transition" by William Bridges. It REALLY helped me put words to what I was feeling and also made me realize that while I moved into a new chapter called "Motherhood" and a new chapter called "living in a new town....again...with no family or friend support..again" that it is important that I bring those things with me that identified me as me like burning incense, meditating, putting on classical music, reading a few pages of a good book before I turn the light off to go to bed, etc. These little things are pieces of me that I have always done many many chapters ago. And when I do these things (sometimes I forget ), I feel so GROUNDED in that moment. Like I feel as though I have come home.

So while you are not who you were and you are still working on who you are becoming, you can still bring pieces of you with you and use them to help create the new you.
Excellent advice! Thanks! I find that writing for a couple hours every week or so centers me. Also, journaling helps when I can find the time. Little things help: a cup of tea, a bubble bath with a good book, etc. Also, one thing that really makes me feel like myself is a good walk, even as a family. Nature really brings me back to myself. And I'm a better mother when I tend to myself here and there in small ways. I need to get much better about that, though.
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#21 of 24 Old 09-29-2010, 03:50 PM
 
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Oh yes yes yes I totally relate!

So while you are not who you were and you are still working on who you are becoming, you can still bring pieces of you with you and use them to help create the new you.
Great advice! Thanks!

DS1-08/12/2007 DS2-06/24/2009
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#22 of 24 Old 09-30-2010, 08:28 PM
 
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I have been feeling like this lately too. For me I have found myself sort of coming out of the crazy wonderful blur of the first two years of motherhood. I have found myself hungry for the "old" me in a way I didn't realize I was missing it. I have done little things like paint my toe nails and buy clothes I actually love. I'm going to buy a new bra next. Radical. I am trying to find a dance class, something I used to love. I am trying to organize a little reunion with my college roomates. I find myself craving the company of the women who loved me then. The other thing I have done is create a huge playlist of the soundtrack of my early twenties. It totally takes me back to that other girl, that girl who is still me and has turned out to be an awesome mama but who still has needs. Ya know?

I have boys! My first baby boy was born 10/08 and my second baby boy was born 7/12

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#23 of 24 Old 10-04-2010, 01:19 AM - Thread Starter
 
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And if I did get a break for a coffee, the entire time I would be thinking about what I should be doing....
Oh, YES. That is totally me. I like what somebody said about taking the things that you used to do/enjoy with you to your new life, and finding time to do little things for yourself...but yes, it's so hard to find the time. I still read a lot, but otherwise I do feel overwhelmed, often. And I do find things to do/enjoy here in my new city--there's definitely no shortage of things to do and there are lots of things that I can enjoy with the kiddo, but it does feel so totally different from my old life. I guess it's the new normal and I just haven't gotten used to it yet.
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#24 of 24 Old 10-09-2010, 01:02 AM
 
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Originally Posted by momtoS View Post

I am not the person I was before children. Nope. And I never will be that person again.......

.
I still need to finish reading the rest of this thread, but that line stuck out at me! I am in a major identity crisis being a first time, full time SAHM to my now toddler. I feel I have nothing interesting to say anymore and that nobody is in fact interested in what I have to say!

I know I'm not that person (pre baby, career path, high heels) anymore but I know I can be a better person and so am trying to find my way to that point...but boy it is hard
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