I woke up this morning like it was any other morning. Only it wasn’t. Today is my youngest’s last day of pre-school. He starts Kindergarten this fall. I have been feeling this identity crisis creeping up on me these past few months wondering what it’s going to be like having both kids in school. Part of me is excited and the other part of me is extremely sad.
I didn’t think I would be so emotional about it, until we were at my oldest’s awards ceremony in her classroom today, and her teacher started crying. I am one of those ultra emotional people who starts crying if I see anyone else cry. I don’t let myself cry often, but when I do cry, its an ugly cry and I get embarrassed and do whatever I can to turn it off and hide any evidence that I’m truly emotional. I don’t know why that it is. Why I feel like I can’t show my true emotions. Perhaps society has taught me that crying is weak and unattractive.
As I was sitting in my daughters classroom, listening to her teacher get emotional, I began to get emotional as well. It reminded me how thankful I am that there are teachers in this world who care about my child as much as I do. It dawned on me that teachers go through the same struggles I as a parent go through. They are excited for the year to be over so they can get a much needed break but they are sad at the same time because they have grown to love and cherish each and every one of those kids.
It is of course emotional for parents yes, but teachers spend more time with our kids then we do it seems. They pour their heart and soul into guiding and teaching our children and at the end of the year we give them a gift and try to sum up a years worth of thank yous in one tiny little card. We don’t say to their face what we wish we could, because we might get too emotional.
So today I want to write this tribute to my daughters teacher Ms. Rauen, her past teachers, her future teachers all the mentors she will encounter in her life!
As I sit here writing those words, I am in tears. I am extremely emotional at the end of the year in general, but this year in particular it’s difficult to come to terms with the fact that in just a few weeks I am going to have both kids in school. As I think back on these past 8 years I am so blessed to have been able to work from home and raise my littles. It hasn’t always been easy, but I can honestly say, I have avoided a lot of regret. I could have easily wasted away those years continuing to look for identity in the wrong places, remained focused on the temporary “things” in life, and become consumed with my business.
A huge part of the reason I am so emotional this year is because I’ve been working on a passion project for the past 9 months. God has really laid it on my heart to create an amazing workshop experience to educate mom business owners and help them avoid the same potential for regret. Several months ago I started a meetup group on Facebook called the Purpose Gathering. Since then, I have been hosting free meetups every month which include networking and education on various topics pertaining to business, parenting, marriage and self-care. It’s been an amazing experience so far and I’ve met a lot of amazing moms!!
In addition to the group, I have partnered with 4 other amazing speakers to bring the first Purpose Gathering Workshop to life this summer. It is my hope that we can equip these moms with skills and practical tools they need to focus on what really matters in life. We want each mom to leave our workshop feeling strengthened, empowered and supported.
As I am fully engrossed in the process of putting on a workshop for the first time, I can honestly say I am learning a lot about myself. Especially in the areas where I am weak and need support. Every time I talk about the heart of this workshop I get emotional thinking about how overwhelmed and alone I felt in my business. I had this false belief that I have overcome all those pit falls. But what I’m learning is that I still often find myself overwhelmed and alone. It’s not something you just conquer and overcome. It’s a daily struggle and a daily decision to find the strength.
The difference between who I am now, and who I was so many years ago, is that I have confidence in knowing my self-worth, I have the skills and strategies to overcome doubt and overwhelm. We want to walk along these moms as their guides. We’ve been there and we know what it’s like to struggle and we want to help them avoid some of the mistakes we’ve made. We want to create an amazing community of mom business owners who understand what the struggle is really like.
A few weeks ago a friend pointed out, while I was apologizing for getting so emotional, that maybe I needed to allow myself the freedom to cry more often. Maybe I needed to just let it happen and know that it’s okay to cry. I don’t really know that anyone has ever really told me that aside from my mom. But let’s be honest who listens to their mom right? It always sounds a hundred times more credible coming from anyone else.
It really got me thinking. Why don’t I let myself cry more often? Why do I avoid having certain conversations or talking about certain topics because I’m afraid I will get emotional? I want to make a public declaration today that I’m going to get more emotional. It scares the crap out of me and I don’t like it at all, but I’m going to try to be more vulnerable and embrace the tears.
So if I start apologizing for getting emotional please remind me that it’s okay to cry, and I want you to do the same.
Allow yourself the freedom to express your emotion.
Let us not be afraid to be who we truly are.
Ugly cry and all.
Photos: Ashley Rae Photography