Yoga teacher, mother, friend, sister, daughter…my current roles. the way I currently define myself. There’s been others in my time, student, manager, executive, wife, lover and others I don’t care to think about.
I’ve been thinking about the way I define myself recently as I have a resistance to one defining role and a hesitancy to let go of another.
MOTHER. I am a mother, I love being a mother, I love my son more than the sun, the moon and all the stars in the sky. His heart beat is the rhythm to which I walk through each day. When I open my eyes to a new day, he is the first thing I think of and watching him sleep will always be one of my favourite things to do. And yet…I have this aversion to being defined as a mother and I have realised this fear comes from the fact that maybe in allowing myself to be defined as a mother, I may lose some of what else makes up Keren before she became Mummy.
It’s come to a head as I have nervously started dipping my toes back into the world of dating. The last time I dated I could not have been more footloose and fancy free. I had a very well paid managerial position, I spent all my hard earned cash on travelling the world as much and as often as I could, I yoga’d my way around the globe and back home in Brisbane I socialised, I shopped, I danced to the beat of my own drum. It was so easy to date. Go to dinner, have a drink, coffee, beach walks, weekends away, lazy Sunday mornings…you get the picture. Fall in love, fall out of love, move on, begin again.
This is no longer my reality. Any potential date has to be thought out, planned methodically, babysitting organised well in advance and getting ready has to take approx 5 mins. Gone are the days of hair straightening, carefully applied make-up, uncreased clothes and heels. In come the days of sponge the snot off my jeans, slap on some mascara and pull a comb through my hair.
And Shiva help the dude that cancels at the last minute or turns up late, this is not part of the well thought out plan and you may as well kick yourself in your own nuts right now.
And Frank. Frank always in my mind. Believe it or not not many people (apart from my mother) are that interested in listening to me describe how Frank sings Jingle bells adorably or has learnt the alphabet song.
So in dating me, the chap in question will have to understand that first and foremost I’m a mother. This defines more more than any other thing. It’s a fact but one I’ve been so resistant to accept myself. But if I ever want someone else to accept it, I have to start with myself, today.
YOGINI, YOGA TEACHER. The label has been the one I’ve clung to more than any other. It’s what makes me happy more than any other ‘job’ I’ve ever had and that’s because it’s more than a job to me. It’s a way of life, the way I live my life and it’s my belief system as well as my income source, my healthcare system and my sanity saver. Next to Frank, Yoga is probably the most important thing in my life. I attach to this label happily and the idea of letting it go a little does not sit well with me!
And I need to, it doesn’t mean I need to let go of yoga but I need to shove the use of it as a defining aspect of my being to the side a little to allow myself to sit with this whole mother things a bit easier.
And trust me, all you yogis out there, I KNOW we are essentially none of these labels. I know how to delve into the whole ‘What am I?’ meditation. I know all about Purusha and Prakriti. The little I and the BIG I. The seer and the seen.
But I’m not on the road to enlightenment in this lifetime (probably got a few more to live through yet to be honest), in this lifetime my work is to start to better know myself, to be a good person and to come to a place of self acceptance and love. So in my role as a teacher I can spread that knowledge.
So I’m interested to hear, how do you define yourself? Which roles fit like a glove and which do you fight until they fight back?!