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Identity Semi-Crisis

February 18, 2010

*Facebook readers are invited to view the original post. Simply go to https://darthmaulmakesmesmile.wordpress.com/2010/02/18/identity-semi-crisis/.*

Maybe it’s just the cold and flu medicine speaking, but I am having one of those weird pondering and musing weeks. Well, I guess it’s not that weird and unusual for me. It’s something akin to an identity crisis, I suppose.

Here’s my life in a series of confusing something-or-others. Paradoxes?

Warning: gross generalisations to follow. And I’m not attacking any one individual or person. Actually, I’m not attacking anyone, full stop. Please read it in the semi-amused observational curious questioning tone in which I have pondered it!

  • I’m in my late 20s, married with two school aged children. Few other late-20 something woman I know in my friendship circles have children as old as mine. In fact, few of them are in relationships, and those that are don’t necessarily have children. Those that do have children have newborns. The fellow mums of my children’s classmates seem to average in their mid-30s to mid-40s. I am not trying to be ageist, so please don’t take it that way. It just occurs to me that I don’t really fit in anywhere in my peer circles. As far as school mums go, I’m the little kid Gen Y who likes abrasive rock music and comical t-shirts and jeans and knows how to use computers. As far as my fellow 20-somethings go, I’m the socially malfunctioning old housewife who can’t afford an iPhone and who can’t go out on most nights because my kids go to bed early and my husband works late. (Being a mum is tiring work!)
  • As far as the 20-something mums go, most of them don’t appear interested in what I have to offer them as a fellow mother who is slightly ahead of them on the journey of parenthood. They seem to have a preference for asking their single, unmarried, non-parent peer friends for input than a mum with school aged kids who’s been-there, done that. Perhaps parenting styles and methods have changed a lot in the last eight years. Let’s face it, my hippy-esque preference for carrying the baby, raising the kids vegetarian, feeding babies on demand, and breastfeeding for almost two years doesn’t mesh well with the controlled feeding, timed, early introduction of solids, everything by-the-clock inflexible routines promoted in inexplicably popular parenting books.
  • I’m a country town girl living (rather miserably) in the suburbs.
  • I’m an ex-Catholic, ex-New Age, born again Spirit filled follower of Jesus. To the Catholics in my life, I probably come across as a bit over-enthusiastic about the whole Jesus thing. To the New Ager friends, well, they’re pretty open minded but understandably skeptical about Jesus followers. To the born againers, I’m potentially dangerous. (Insert LOL here.)
  • I find I feel closest to God when I am out in the peace and solitude of rural and bushland Australia, where I can listen to the birds, feel the wind in the trees, smell flowers, touch the earth, watch the clouds rolling across the sky. Somehow I have ended up in a non-denominational Pentecostal mega-church of several thousand believers. For many of them, they feel closest to God in the community of believers. The loud, musically oriented community of believers! (It is a brilliant Christian community and I love it.)
  • I am an outdoorsy person who has myriad allergies to plant pollens, animals and pollution. Sigh!
  • I am a quiet person who gets a kick out of public speaking.
  • I’m the token born-again Christian in an extended family of Catholics,  lapsed Catholics, New Agers and Atheists.
  • I am an artsy, writing-loving person who doesn’t seem to have heaps of talent in either area.
  • I want to be cool but I’m a nerd.
  • I’m a lacto-ovo vegetarian who grew up in beef and dairy-farming country.
  • I detest blind ritualism but I choose to celebrate the old Catholic feasts on which I was raised: Easter, Advent, Christmas, and Lent.
  • I’m pretty sure God has been speaking to me about my need to spend this year in a recovery and restoration mode: taking time out to pray, to study the Bible, to not exhaust myself in church activities, to focus on my children and my university studies. So it sometimes confuses me when other Christian women suggest that I am not involved enough in church and Christian activities. Is not following God’s word to me for this season greater than going along with the crowd?

All this has left me feeling like I really don’t fit in anywhere. I’m not trying to complain. This isn’t a whinge fest. It just makes me wonder what I’m meant to be when I don’t really fit in with what the people around me are doing! I guess I’ve never particularly liked being the same as everyone else, anyway. Life is more interesting when it’s diverse.

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2 comments

  1. WOW!

    One of the best blog posts I have read in quite awhile…so you do have some talent!

    I enjoyed learning more about you and find you even more interesting now!

    I became a follower of Jesus at 28 and my wife became a follower when she was about 30…we are not the typical “churchy types”…we don’t do “churchy” but we are active volunteers with Church and “other causes”…

    We can’t have kids and that really hits you hard in the Church community…particularly around women who often live for their kids like men do for their jobs and sports. Now we are in our 40’s and much more comfortable with whom we are…actually it probably started early t mid 30’s…

    We do not fit with anybody…we have loads of friends and acquaintances…but are not a close fit with most…fortunately we are an excellent fit for one another…my wife is a beautiful intelligent woman that also laughs at my jokes…what more can I ask for? No wonder I am still head over heels in love after 16 years…

    Those who are not Jesus followers don’t quite know what to make of us…and those that are love us but we don’t quite click because of the history…

    To those that say you are not active enough at Church I suggest you mention your web work…the Kingdom is more than inside the building on Sunday mornings and/or Wednesday evenings…

    You seem to be a caring intelligent articulate arts minded woman…I think you rock!

    Just as sail boats at times hit the doldrums on the open sea so do people…it is a time to prepare for the rest of the voyage…and I am guessing that since its been a while since this post you are already feeling a bit different…some wind in your sails…

    Wait for menopause! No don’t…live life BIG…be the best you that you can be…but don’t do it under your own steam…let Him transform you…

    Take care sister…you have a brother on the other side of the planet praying for you…

    LS

    P.S.
    I hear you on allergies and loving the outdoors…Cool and nerd…writing and arts but possibly no talent…ok like meat…perhaps you should eat steak..it makes me happy 😉


  2. Hi!

    thank you so much for this encouraging response!

    “We can’t have kids and that really hits you hard in the Church community…particularly around women who often live for their kids like men do for their jobs and sports. Now we are in our 40’s and much more comfortable with whom we are…actually it probably started early t mid 30’s…”

    This is really interesting. I do wonder if it’s the same sort of atmosphere in Australia. I can’t really say because I haven’t experienced it, and don’t really know anyone who has. Our church does have a very large singles ministry, and generally among my peers there is not a lot of interest in dating or marriage. Or maybe it’s a fear of getting it wrong.

    Thanks so much for your uplifting words. What a nice way to start the day – to open my email and see this comment!



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