So many of us mamas struggle to find our place in the world of other mamas everywhere. At school, church, the playground, kids’ activities, and school functions, so many of us struggle to fit in. I am one of them, and I know that I’m not alone.
I am typically the outsider, the bystander. Over time, I open up and allow myself to connect. I have spoken to a few women with whom I have felt a connection, and the conversations are generally the same. We are reserved, reluctant, have a life story with challenges, sadness, hurt, love, loss, mountains to climb, and blessed in a multitude of ways.
I am that mom who goes to the park hoping no one talks to me and almost every single time someone does. As I walk to our neighborhood park, my anxiety sets in and I start to think of my exit strategies from people and conversations without coming off as rude or pretentious. I have felt many times not relatable.
But I’ve recently started to venture out of my shell. I met a wonderful woman at our neighborhood park, a single mother of 4 who moved here a number of years ago. We started talking and our conversation just flowed. I can act extroverted if I feel comfortable and safe with you. I am also that person who is very introverted and will shut others out and stay in my “bubble.”
As I spoke with my new friend, we had many similarities. We were both very open, honest, and vulnerable. We shared and are experiencing some of the same mommy feelings regarding life, past and present. Sometimes feeling inadequate, misunderstood, pressure for summer to be perfect, struggling to fit in, a desire to provide for our children in ways as their peers, and more importantly, our belief in God, the positive belief in hope for now and the future.
Not everyone’s life ends up a picture-perfect story. All of us carry scars, some visible, some unseen. We all have a way to inspire people we meet with our story. We do not have to disclose all the ups and downs in our lives to a stranger. I know I did not with my new friend. We can all inspire someone, even a stranger, with our stories, our life. Inspire people, share your stories, share a part of yourselves. You never know who you can inspire and quite possibly change their lives, priorities, or way of thinking. None of us are the same but we all have something to share.
No matter who you are, where you come from, your successes and your failures; share them. Open up and share them. You never know who is listening and who needs to hear it, to feel connected, to feel understood, or the ones that are needing that hope and connection with someone.
I want to end with this; my new friend said to me, “There are angels that walk amongst us, people that are placed in our path, angels on this physical earth…you are one.” It was humbling, but I know my purpose is to inspire, encourage, listen, love, and understand others with zero judgement.
Even as an introvert, allow yourself to be vulnerable and honest, venture outside of your “bubble.” You never know the impact you can have; as well the impact other beautiful-hearted people can have on you. Share this mindset with your children. This next generation needs more of it for sure.