As previously mentioned, I love the blogger Girls Gone Child (girlsgonechild.net). In one of her posts the other day she articulated a sense of longing that I’ve been experiencing for weeks now. A desire to have even one small thing about my life that is fun, secret, possibly dangerous, and mine alone. She writes of her own secret bad behavior:
I will be the first to tell my children that smoking will kill you. That even one is a terrible idea, but that will not stop me from buying my monthly pack at the newstand… driving up in my minivan, under the cloak of night to sit on the stoop of my home, watching my breath float away.
We do what we think is right for our families but also for ourselves, even when it’s dangerous. Risky. NOT ALLOWED.
….Because the longer we try not to light the thing on fire, the more it consumes us.
This does not make us bad parents or people. It makes us human beings who are willing to accept that we exist beyond our spouses’ peripheral vision. And our children’s. And our audience’s.
There have been many days, and particularly nights, lately when my heart has ached with longing for something, some one small thing, that is mine alone. A secret joy to smile at when I might otherwise feel like crying. Something to look forward to when moving forward feels impossible.
Unfortunately, I have no idea what this thing could be. And sometimes I’m afraid of what might happen if I don’t figure it out.
I can’t live my life for my kids alone, I just can’t. I need my own life, too. And I need something in life that does not relate to my kids. It doesn’t have to be bad or illicit, but it has to be something that is for me alone.
I go to yoga, and I blog, and I nap when I can. I do all of those things they tell you to do, but it’s not enough. I need something more. I don’t know what and I don’t know why, but I know that I need it and I know that that need scares me. Because it won’t be ignored for long. And it can’t be drugged or drunk away. I know, I’ve tried. Not this time but in the past.
I have got to figure this out for me, for all of us.