I married young. And had kids young. I had my third and last child at the age of 28.
It’s worked out really well for me physically. I was able to lose the baby weight and then some. I’m skinnier now than before kids. Crazy.
It’s worked out for me emotionally. Without my extremely supportive husband I would never have had the confidence to do half the things I’ve done. Healthy relationships are really good at boosting self-esteem that way.
It’s worked out for me financially. My husband is an amazing provider and we’ve always been taken care of as a family. And I’ve been able to use my college degree here and there to make a little extra cash.
One of the ways it hasn’t quite worked out, though, is in the way of creativity. I know there are lots of creative moms out there who are rolling their eyes right now. “You can be a creative mom!” They’re yelling at me through their computer screens, “Have you seen the thousands of crafty mom blogs out there?!” Why, yes. Yes I have. I’ve made cute picture frames for my kids and set up elaborate photo shoots and sewed baby blankets and tote bags and refinished furniture and made pictures and baby clothes and done home redecorating and blogging and all manner of creative endeavors to try to fill that hole of creativity inside my soul.
For some reason I thought everything had to be stay-at-home-mom-related. Everything had to do with or be done for my kids and my family. I was a SAHM. I wore coral-colored shirts and khaki capris. I made cutesy kid stuff and got really good at baking. SAHM was my identity.
My identity wasn’t cutting it. Yes, there’s a lot of creative stuff you can do for and with kids. I’ve done a lot of it and will probably continue to do more of it since I have kids. But what I loved before I had kids wasn’t what I was doing with my kids. And, let’s be honest, my children really don’t care if I have a cute craft waiting for them on a rainy Saturday afternoon; They’d rather play with Legos and hang out than have me hover over them trying to get them to “create” something the way I want them to create it. Their creativity isn’t my creativity. And my creativity isn’t kid-related. We’re all better off if I take my creativity elsewhere.
Enter: Band. I turned 30, had always wanted to be in a band and was looking better than I’d probably looked my entire life. Not that looks have anything to do with finding a band, but when you’re a woman and you want to join the kind of band I did, looks kind of did have something to do with finding a band. I figured I had better start checking off my bucket list before I got too old to actually check it off.
So I found a group of really good musicians who happen to also be really good guys and BOOM! We have a band. And it is fun. And it doesn’t so much fill in that hole of creativity inside my soul, but expands it and lets more creativity out.
Using a talent does amazing things like that.