Who Is This Person I Am Today?

Who is this person looking back at me from the mirror? There are things about her that look familiar, but there are so many things about her that I don't recognize.

At one time, years ago, when I saw her face in the mirror, she was young, youthful, bright and her eyes were filled with excitement at the thought of what the future might hold. She was self-assured, self-confident. She knew what she wanted for her life. She was strong and resilient. She was a leader among her friends. People admired and looked up to her as someone they wanted to emulate. She was a 'take charge' type of person, someone who couldn't be bullied, who spoke her mind honestly. She was opinionated, unapologetically so. She was active, playing tennis, roller/ice skating, rode her bicycle daily, walked miles daily.

The person looking back at me now, is very different, I don't know her. She's got gray/white hair, her eyes look tired. The corners of her eyes are crinkly, the corners of her mouth turn down. She's overweight and primarily immobile. Her face reveals a lot of internal turmoil. She struggles emotionally, physically. She cries often, feels lonely often. She feels weak and ineffective. She has too much on her plate, trying to do too many things.

She feels lost most of the time, like she's walking through a fog, on autopilot. She goes through the motions of being a mother, wife, advocate, managing employer, person with disabilities, Godmother, friend, sister-in-law, aunt, neighbor, cook, housekeeper, etc.

She used to do needlework, crafts, draw, paint, write fiction. She used to be able to take time for herself without feeling guilty, as if she isn't pulling her weight, as if she is neglecting someone else's needs, but no longer.

The person looking back at me looks tired, sad, alone. She's not weathered the changes in her life as well as she might have, as well as she'd like.

She's timid today, she's easily bullied, afraid of hurting other people's feelings. She doesn't speak out like she once would have, she chooses her battles and absorbs a lot of disrespect to avoid confrontation. She focuses more on 'understanding', trying to see all points of view.

I don't recognize this person who caters so much to the feelings and desires of others. Where did that other person go? Why is there so little of her left behind? Why is the person in the mirror so apologetic for speaking up, defending what's hers, standing up for herself?

A friend I had not seen in years, whom I'd begun corresponding with recently commented that I'd "become really mellow", "lowered your expectations of other people".

Perhaps that's what happens when you're repeatedly disappointed, feel as if you're raging against something you have no control of? Perhaps that's what happens when you've lost yourself?
rollingwithhusky rollingwithhusky
46-50, F
4 Responses Jul 16, 2010

I have to say that your story really touched me...I am a 30 year woman still trying to "find" - in your words 'Who this person I am today' is. I wake up daily with questions that I cannot find answers to. I instantly felt a connection when you wrote, "She feels lost most of the time, like she's walking through a fog, on autopilot. She goes through the motions of being a mother, wife, advocate, managing employer, person with disabilities, Godmother, friend, sister-in-law, aunt, neighbor, cook, housekeeper, etc."<br />
<br />
The explanation of just going through the motions - I'm lost - like walking through a fog. If I had a quarter for all the times I have said, "I just feel like everything is a blur" in the past year - I'd be rich!<br />
<br />
At times, I feel that all of the answers I need are right in front of me but I am some how just too hung up on looking and not actually feeling. I have my good days where I feel totally confident, I take time to practice my meditations and prayers - but they are few and far between. <br />
<br />
I am indecisive - I feel that I question things that I already have the answer to. I feel inadequate and have low self-esteem. When I meet new people and they ask me what I like to do - you know - I can't even ANSWER that question. I don't know. I like to believe that I am coming into my own with learning things about myself. I don't think I give myself enough credit though. <br />
<br />
I've been through a lot - as all of us have - I just want to wake up one day and actually FEEL okay. Okay with ME and where I am and decisions I have made or I am making. I want to live in the moment and ENJOY this journey. <br />
<br />
I feel at times, like I said above, that I question too much. Do you or anyone else do the same thing?<br />
<br />
One example - I completed my Associates degree in Healthcare Administration - I went on and became EKG certified - I am a licensed Insurance Agent. But - I cannot find a job within these fields (economy, I know). I'm currently working as a Health Aide in an elementary school and absolutely LOVE the job - but my pay is horrible and the drive is an hour and a half both ways. What I make an hour makes up for the gas I use to drive back and forth to work. <br />
<br />
So, I did research and found that if I go on to become LPN certified I can make double what I am now and actually LIKE what I am doing....But the thought always comes back to me that I should just continue to look for a job in which I already have my credentials in. What if I go to LPN school and cannot get a job? Like what happened with my degree and other certifications?<br />
<br />
I'm just troubled by decisions that I have made or I am making constantly. <br />
<br />
And in regard to "the fog" - I have noticed that I just walk around not feeling - the only feeling I am used to or know is anger or sadness. <br />
<br />
Things always seem to be too good to be true to me...It comes down to who am I, where am I and how do I balance, feel and put things into perspective that are important. I guess water my garden and get down to pulling out the unnecessary weeds....<br />
<br />
I pray everyday for the "link" that I am missing to be shown to me and for the help to enjoy myself along the search; but I just feel empty and lost. <br />
<br />
This is my first comment and time visiting this site - so I apologize if I'm confusing or rambling - but this post just really hit home. <br />
<br />
Any input is appreciated.

Just thought I'd mention I added my story to this group. Thank you for the inspiration.

I can understand how you feel. I, too, lost myself along the way, somehow. I, too am now old, grey, and wondering what happened to the me I was. My life path is quite different from yours, but I can recognize some of the same trail markings on my path too. I think you may have inspired me to add my own story to this group.

Hi I know nothing about life,but Ireally know how is being lost.I walk on and on just to find somebody,something,a signal or perhaps the mere God just to help me find something lost.<br />
Everything is blurred,I am blurred too.Take care my friend<br />
sorry if I don´t write correctly,I´m learning english so if you make me right I´d appreciate it so much,thanks.