When I asked Color Online staff to take the lead in my absence, I had no idea I’d be gone so long. I’d checked in a few times and I was flooded with gratitude.
There wasn’t a major crisis that occurred in my life rather there was a series of incidents pushing me in a direction I had refused to go. Like many people I think I’m open to change and I wholeheartedly believe we have to be willing to embrace change but when it’s actually time to change I resist.
Let me explain. Not long ago a friend gave a speech about work/life balance. Josh is a young man not long married and he has a toddler son. He quoted a speaker who said there is no work/life balance. The writer said life gives us choices and we have to be prepared to live with the consequences of our choices. Every day we have to choose our priorities. I believe my friend said that ultimately our goal is to have acceptance with our decisions.
The idea of acceptance versus balance struck a chord for me because my family and professional life had changed in major ways in the fall but I didn’t want to change, and I've never had balance. I struggled to define my priorities. I didn’t want to choose and consequently I didn’t have balance or acceptance.
I didn’t know how to evolve in my role as a mom and partner. I didn’t want to accept that I needed to be more in involved in my daughter’s activities and less involved in my own. I couldn’t make a real shift. Looking back on my teen years, my twenties and thirties, I could see changes in my interests and priorities were natural shifts so why was I resistant to another change when my daughter entered high school and was living with us full-time?
Failing to voluntarily change resulted in hitting a wall emotionally and mentally. Crashing forced me to to change how I parented and that meant making different choices. Parenting differently also meant rethinking how my relationship with my guy was changing. I'm in my mid-forties; I've been through a lot. I think it's time to trust that I can parent and love and pursue my passions, make mistakes and still remain whole.
My daughter rarely reads here and I wasn’t sure if you the community would be comfortable with me sharing something so intimate about my life or if I’d be comfortable sharing it but here it is.
I don’t know if my daughter recognized the stress and discomfort I was feeling, but I know spending more time with her has positively affected us. I think I’m headed in the right direction, and now I am able to come back to my second home, the space that is for me a space where I gain strength and joy and support. This space is evolving and I can’t thank the Color Online team enough for it.
Thank you all for the kind replies to Doret’s post. I had feared I was asking too much. I shouldn’t have worried. You’ve demonstrated the power of community and love women can give one another.
Change is inevitable and I know these changes are good. I am grateful to you, the women of Color Online.