The Woman I Wanted to Be

No one ever talks about who I could have been, no one asks who I wanted to be, only one person understands how much I gave up to be who I was supposed to be. They share my anger, actually their anger is greater than mine, it’s comforting. But, I am not supposed to feel angry, I am not allowed to express my frustration or confusion or disappointment because it was all done in my best interest. I let it happen because I didn’t want to disappoint anyone, so, instead, I let myself down. I gave up on the life I had dreamed about. Now, don’t get me wrong, I love who I have in my life and I understand I would not have them had things been different but, deep down, I mourn the life I wanted to live.

I had planned to go off to a four year university, I never wanted to settle for community college. I applied for two CSUs (because they both had bands and I could march with their colorguard) and was accepted to both. But, I didn’t have a car and my mom’s car wasn’t reliable and so we didn’t know how often we would be able to see each other. We had always been all we had, her, my Nana, me and my brother. Even though she had my stepdad, stepsister and stepbrother, it was still us. I couldn’t leave my mom, I had to be there for her if she needed me, she counted on me to be there for her. So, I didn’t take the SATs to use that as an excuse to not qualify to attend the schools and be forced to accept attending College of the Desert. Both schools, Cal State Long Beach and Cal State San Marcos reached out to me, offering to pay for and allow me to take the SATs when I arrived for Freshman year as a student of their school. Neither could help me with the transportation issue, I had to decline both. Hey, at least I was accepted right?

I was going to pledge a Sorority in college and be able to live in the house, I was going to make lifelong friends, and have a network of sisters that would open doors for me. I planned on having a kick ass job with my own flat, condo or something and live the life in a big city. Like in Lipstick Jungle, I was going to have it all, work was going to be my baby until I found a husband and we started a family, then I would be able to juggle it all because I was that freaking awesome. I would be able to go out, travel a lot for work, make big moves and keep up with the best of them. I was fearless and nothing was going to get in my way. I watch shows like Grownish and The Bold Type and see the life I had wanted to live. You know, I could have done it, I had what it took.

Instead, I stayed here, I went to community college, worked at the mall, left my high school boyfriend for my son’s father, dropped out of college because he was insecure and afraid I would leave him for a college student, got engaged, got pregnant, found out he cheated and was having another baby as well, left him, and had my son by myself. I suffered from post partum depression so severely that I bordered on post partum psychosis. I didn’t have a chance to go back to college because I chose my son over my dream to finish school. I had several long term relationships but none that lasted, I did what I was told because according to my family, nothing I want matters once you have a child. They tell me what to do and if I choose to go against it, I am guilted into submission. So, I lived day in and day out doing what I was supposed to do, trying to fit in the box that had been built for me instead of being free to live the life I wanted. I didn’t even realize how miserable I was until a few years ago. Until someone saw the real me begging to get out and fought for me to do so.

I had given in, didn’t understand that I had the power to make a change, to want better, to be the woman I wanted to be. Now, that woman has changed, I am a mom and I want to be a great mom and wife first, and then have a career I love and can make a difference. But, I had been convinced that I couldn’t do things on my own, that I should be afraid of the world, that listening to them was the best for me and Jeremiah that when someone finally put a mirror to my face, showed me where I was at, what I was capable of and that I could make a change, I didn’t listen. I couldn’t believe it. One, well, because I had been told otherwise for so long, and two, if he was right, I’d have to admit to all of the time I wasted doing nothing. I was afraid to admit the person I had become and just how far away from my dreams I had gotten. When I did realize it, I was still hesitant to admit it because I didn’t know how to fix it. This caused quite a few problems. It’s hard to believe in someone for such a long period of time when they won’t believe in themselves, when they won’t stand up for themselves.

On this journey of self discovery, I have had to deal with many of my skeletons and today, it’s this one. I am writing things I have never even said out loud. I know that everything was and is done out of love but, not for love of who I truly am and what I want. I am an adult and I am still being told what to do and how to act and feel. All of my siblings have children, yes, plural, I have Jeremiah. Yes, my son is amazing and I love him to death but, I was meant to be mommy to more babies. I said something to that affect today and again was met with harsh words and told that I was dumb, that I didn’t need any more babies, that I better not have any more. I was trying earlier this year, I was trying. I believed that this was going to be my year, I was going to have my little girl. That may never happen now but, the thought of being told what I can and can’t do, I just can’t seem to swallow it like I have done for all of my life. I am my own person, I am the one that decides what I do. My anger is flowing out like lava. I don’t regret the path I took when I was younger because there are people that mean so much to me, people I can’t live without and they wouldn’t be in my life otherwise, but, I am so over someone saying they love me as they tell me how to be. If you love me, let me be me and if I fall, laugh if you want, but, help pick me up so that I can try again.

I am capable of doing great things, of loving wholly and fully, of being a fucking awesome mom to my children (plural), of being an amazing wife, of conquering the world and being outstanding. No one puts Baby in the corner, not anymore! This is the time of my life.

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