As a woman in her late 30s, I am constantly amazed at how much I’m still growing, learning, changing. I know that learning is a life long process, but it’s easy to assume you know who you are…at least for me.
This past week I was able to spend some time in my creative, work space. I attended the Mom 2.0 Conference in Scottsdale, Arizona (AMAZING!) where I was surrounded by people who do and get what I do – blogging, writing, video, social media and more.
The event was exhausting, exhilarating, refreshing and frustrating. Yes, I said frustrating.
I was frustrated because of the dialogue that was going on in my head, because I could feel parts of me that used to be there slipping away.
You see I’m an extrovert. At least mostly.
All my life I’ve thrived being around people. I love flitting around, chatting and absorbing energy from the awesome fantastic people I have the privilege of knowing. But that seems to be changing. A few times this last week I had that “alone in a crowd” feeling and it was unsettling and unfamiliar. I found myself feeling small, which isn’t usually like me.
I don’t write this with expectations or hopes of people telling me I’m not small, not insignificant. Deep down, I know this. I am me. I’m running my own race and taking my own journey. But I know I’m not alone in this feeling and while it passed for me, it may be more of a constant for others.
I have my tribe. I’m quite blessed with a group of women who are my conference “peeps”. When we met, we were all local ladies and though we don’t see each other as often in town, conferences are “our” time. Yes, we crowd into one hotel room and I wouldn’t have it any other way.
I think this was the fourth time we’ve stayed together. We stay up late and talk – about life, our job(s), our sites, kids, and husbands. We brainstorm new ideas. We laugh and sometimes cry. These women are my friends and I am so lucky to have them in my life.
So I had my pity party. I let my feelings sit for awhile and then I swallowed them down. I didn’t have time for that. I needed to put on my big girl panties and have fun. This getaway was about me. It was meant to be enjoyed.
And it was.
There was lots of laughter, in-depth conversations, note-taking, good food, and a few drinks. There was time by the pool and new friends to be made. And, of course, the dancing! Never enough dancing!
It was a good and necessary few days. I was able to be Erin, the woman vs Erin, the mom, wife, daughter. I was able to reflect on what I’m doing and what kind of mark I want to leave on the world. Even though there were times I wasn’t sure I knew who I was looking at in the mirror, it was still good to see her, peeking back at me. I’m on the way to getting to know her again. She may be different; she may be changing. But she’s still me.