03 November 2008

[talk: Hello Me ... It's Time To Say Goodbye Again]

I've been debating how transparent I should be on this blog. A-HA .. I've got your attention now *smile* ... Some of you who come and visit, I've never met. Most, though, are friends or are church family - and I feel a responsibility to be accurate in my words. I would hate for my ramblings to be misinterpreted or diluted ... or slandered. But after my brain aching over the same thoughts, I've come to think that maybe - just maybe - I'm not alone in this one. Something has really caught me by surprise.

Seriously - every time a friend has looked me in the eyes, with a big grin and said, "SOO???? How was your trip??" I can't even talk. My eyes well up and I quietly say, "I can't talk about it just yet." How crazy is that?? And I'm certain they think I'm a loon, or that our vacation was just the worst thing ever.

But it wasn't. Our vacation was incredible. We had SO much fun with our cousins and with each other. And I will be sharing about the crazy things we did, and I have a few million photos to share too *grin*. Fantastic ports, a beautiful ship, hot, glorious weather. A really perfect holiday.

But as the week went on, I found myself spending more time on my own - and being satisfied with that. I haven't really been on my "own" (aside from those 30 hours in Phoenix) and being able to dive into selfishness on a daily basis. When I say that, I mean that I didn't have to make sure that Josiah was being watched while I went to the bathroom. Or I could read entire chapters of my novel without interruption and get lost in the story. I could stay out until 2am, watching a movie or having a brewed tea. I could meet people, whom I did - such wonderful people - and laugh, learn, just be with.

And I was just ... Tawn.

Even as I write this, tears stream down my face. Not because I don't love my life - I do. It's not about that. If I wasn't married for 10 years with two glorious kids - having every moment for myself - I would be doing everything in my power to BE that married person with two glorious kids. I am satisfied in that. But I feel like I'm already losing that person that I got reacquainted with on the ship. I'm already waist deep in titles of what I think I'm supposed to be or what others want from me. And I'm certain that most of those titles are accurate, and yet being just Tawn was the most glorious part of my week away. I've never been on a vacation where I feel like I physically took of my Coat of Titles and got to have just me shine through.

As the Lord would have it, I became attached to a family on the ship. How this happened, I'm really not sure. But it did. They were all on board for their parent's 50th Anniversary - and they represented Christ so evidently. We hit it off and to them, I was just me. Not a wife or mom. Not a hostess or a worship leader. I wasn't a piano player or a music teacher. I was just Tawn ... do you get the reoccurring theme here *smile*?

And maybe this is what the whole experience has been about for me - remembering to have moments where I can be just "me" and reinforcing the desire to be known and to know others ... Maybe even YOU don't see me as all of those titles either. Maybe you DO know who I am, and it's just my own insecurities living the unspoken expectations I feel. Maybe it's all in my head - trust me - there have been a LOT of things going on in this head of mine *grin*. So many things.

And I know that this is all mighty strange - but for me, this moment is so real. And tomorrow it will feel less strong, and the day after that and after that. And eventually I'll read this and not even be able to relate to any of it ... I just hope someone who reads this can.

Which leads me to this final thought - if coming home has been such an emotional experience, do I wish I'd never gone? HECK no. I wouldn't trade a moment, a conversation, a new friend, a photograph ...

I just wish I could relive every moment all over again.


Anonymous said...

Maybe if you can find a way every day to be "just Tawn" then you won't lose her?

I'm looking forward to doing whatever I'd like without interruption on my holiday this weekend and week!

Lori F.

Anonymous said...

i can kind of relate to you on this subject, Tawn. living where i do, i don't wear nearly as many hats as you do, but it's not always the number of hats, but the size of them, i suppose. when Henri and i took our little Tuscan break a few weeks ago, i had no idea how much i would enjoy it and how much i really needed it. now, i've done a fair bit of travelling, but i don't usually sit and reminisce about it. however, i can tell this trip really affected me in the way that i keep having flashbacks of certain images or conversations or tastes/smells. these remembrances bring such joy in the midst of my normality, and like i said, are so unusual for me, that i feel it's just God blessing me all over again. reminding me of who i am and what He's given me and rejuvenating me for the future.
i hope He does the same for you, Tawn.

Anonymous said...

I totally understand where you are coming from - I had a similar experience this year when I travelled with 5 other girls to Hawaii. I knew some of them well and a couple not much - but I got to be "me". I too would do it all in a heart beat! I am so glad you had such an amazing trip!

Dawn C

AlisonVeritas said...

I would also just encourage you that all the other hats and titles will only be sufficiently worn if you stay "just Tawn" while you wear them. You don't have to be Tawn the worship leader and Tawn the mom...just be Tawn(who happens to do lots of things successfully!)

Shawna said...

I like "just Tawn" too...glad it was everything and more to you!

Carmen said...

Hi, Just a note to say to you your feelings at this time are so normal. I honestly believe that as mothers we do lose our identity. I felt that way
myself here and there while raising my children. We not only have to be someone else, I think that to be a good mother, wife, etc. that losing who we are is just part of it. It is what makes us what we are or should I say who we are for the time being. Think about this a little, if you were just
Tawn all of the time would you be able to respond to and be as good of a mother as you are. It is all just part of the life we choose. You get married you are now not just Tawn but you are a wife. You have children
now you are also a Mom. You are still you just your roll for the time being
is something else.
One thing to know is it is OK. It's ok to want to just be you now and then.
Its not wrong of you either to feel like you need to be just you.
I hope that your not feeling any guilt, you shouldn't. If you are, it only
proves that you are in the role you need to be. Your a wife and I am sure
a wonderful mom.
My kids are now 27 & 23, adults. My youngest just recently moved out
and I have been thinking something on the same line as you. For me now
it is ok who am I now. Where is the Carmen that used to be me. Not mom
yes still wife but I feel my years were about my children and making them the best that they could be. Yes I do have some other problems I am dealing with right now that kind of double the thought of "who am I".
I unfortunately became disabled 6 years ago. It is a very difficult time for
me. So not only am I trying to find myself as I used to be before my children, but what I used to be before becoming disabled.
Anyway trying to put this in short for you, You are still you! just for now
your roll in life is a little different, and that is ok.
Do as someone said her and there try to take time for yourself. For me
the last 15 years or so once a year I get together with best friends and we go away for a long weekend. It is something that let us know that we
were still just us. Friends having fun, taking off the layers of the rolls
we need to be when we are at home.
So take some comfort in knowing you are not alone. It is a good thing to be just you once in a while.
I probably rambled here, sorry, but I hope you understand what I tried to say.