thoughts.


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I took the color code personality test a few days ago in my interpersonal communications class. I’d taken this test several times throughout high school and college—and i always came out a yellow, slightly blue. A light green. Full of personality, life of the party, with a little bit of a perfectionist + loyal side.

As i took the test this time, i was stopped up on almost every question. Was i more proactive or more nurturing? Positive or thoughtful? Creative or spontaneous? I used to whiz through those questions, so sure of who i was and confident in where i was headed, it seemed like those adjectives jumped out at me. Engaging? Of course. Motivated? Always! Now I wasn’t sure which was me—which was the old me, which was the me i wish i still was.

 I knew that a nurturing, co-dependent, loving side of me emerged when i made the decision to get married. But it seemed that muted some other characteristics—like my fierce career direction and gravitation towards social situations.

A little disoriented by my inability to answer those questions by instinct, the lecture went on into Gardner’s 7 intelligences. This is a brilliant theory, by the way—essentially 5 out of 7 categories of ‘intelligence’ are not ways that are measured by our school systems. Anyway. The last 2 are inter-personal communication, your ability to communicate well with others, read their emotions, manipulate social situations, etc. The last is intra-personal communication, your ability to communicate with yourself—including being in tune with your fears, your joys, situations you thrive/struggle in, and so on.

 And I realize that almost as much as i struggle with the logical/math intelligence, i am sorely lacking in my intra-personal communication.

I lost a lot of things I identified with when i got married. I might even say the majority of them. I lost that intense independence that i held so dear, i lost the plans that i would share with anyone willing to listen, i lost my flirtatious persona. (much to the relief of my husband!) Don’t get me wrong, i have gained more in this first year than i ever could have lost from those first 22. I am still confident, I’m just not positive where it’s coming from anymore.

It dawned on me, however, that i didn’t know myself anymore. I mean, I know I would kill a man for a cupcake, and that Saturday morning pump class is my favorite workout (fully aware those 2 don’t go together), and that i wish i could own every jcrew piece and new books bring me a rush of endorphins.

But what about other things, the more important things?  Im not totally sure where i put myself socially anymore. Do i accept the fact that im shyer and want to stay in more now that i’m married? Or do i push myself out of that habit and back into, what i believe, is my natural inclination? Where do I accept myself and where do i push for more? (the great paradox of life, it comes up in my thoughts almost daily.) Is pushing for more going to be unnatural?

 What do i really want for my life? Not what i just LIKE or like the idea of, or what fits into the persona i’ve set, but what do i really, truly, deep down into my bones want from my life, my career, my years and years i have ahead of me? Do I want to write a book? Do i want to be a communications professor? Do i push every button I have to be in front of the tv camera again, in a setting that matters? The answer is, basically, that I don’t know. Truly. I have no idea anymore.

This reality rattles around my ribcage in a painful way. I look at myself blankly in the mirror. Not with a look of disgust, but no joy is in my eyes, either. I am blank. I try not to be jealous as I see Jordan grab internships and that fiery ambition by the horns. He is headed on a freeway to successful-ville, and i am meandering along some frontage road, not sure where I am or where I am headed. I want to be humble, so badly I want to be humble.

But i want to know, 'what about me?'

This is the beautiful chaos of life. You finally decide what it is that you want, who you are—and then something else falls in your lap. But knowing your insides, knowing what truly makes you tick and being completely honest with yourself about it, there’s got to be a comfort that goes with that, no? A sense of security in the things you love, where your passions connect, and then the rest of it, they’re just things.

But we continue to change. And I think we’d be better at change if we knew the parts of ourselves so well, that we knew exactly what it is we’re letting go of, in order to gain something new, something bigger, something more challenging.

Taking a good hard look at yourself can be painful—honesty includes the ugly. But I want to know. I really yearn (what a word) to know what’s down there.  I’m not sure what I’ll find—but im happy to have Jordan help me figure it out, and sort through the mess when I find it.

 

"so don't emulate wonder woman, think about whats wonderful to you instead. then, boldly, audaciously, joyfully leave the rest behind."
 
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Comments

  1. I struggled with this in both a similar and a different way. Marriage seemed to steal my social identity too, and I am still working on finding sure footing there. My career goals were very different than yours, but I was astonished when my drive to teach seemed to wane, and I didn't really have anything to replace it. It were necessary for me to work, I would jump back into teaching in a heart beat because I do love it, and that is what my degree is in....but in short, I hear ya!

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    1. life's an adjustment, & it's nice to know im not the only one still dealing with that! thanks for your thoughts. i sure love ya, kar.

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  2. I love this post sooooo much. I know this is selfish, but it is comforting to know that I am not the only one going through this. This is something I have been working hard on the past few months. I have really had to sit down, and think about what I want to do with my life, and who I want to be. Who knows if things will change, but for how I am happy with where my life is headed :)

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    1. im glad to hear that shelby! thanks for your thoughts, you are becoming one of my favorite people on the internet. you are the sweetest--i love hearing from you/reading what you have to say.

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  3. I think most people go through this shortly after marriage, and I realized something (for me anyway): before I got married, I chose to surround myself with people who were like me. Meaning that when I married someone who wasn't me, it was strange that he didn't always think the same, and that was confusing to identify with. I guess I just forgot that there are other people who think differently from me, and that's actually pretty great. I started having the same questions you have, and the thing that helped the most for me was when I started studying Christ's life. LIke REALLY studying it. I was able to see exactly what He would do in every situation and how He would answer questions. It completely changed me. It was during this time that both my husband and I realized it was time to start our family. I finished school right before I had Ezra, and now I'm at home with him, and I KNOW it's where I'm supposed to be. I know this is a long comment, but basically, if you have questions, you'll find them in the scriptures. I truly believe that. Just live the way Christ wants you to live, and you will be happy. :)

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    1. you are 110% right. sometimes it's hard to just up & put everything else in front of what WE want. but i appreciate you saying this, it really gave me a good perspective. you're obviously fabulous, kaylie :) thanks again.

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  4. This is such a gorgeously honest post. First off, thank you so much for sharing so much of yourself. I learned in a class in my second year of college that it is normal and honestly better if couples start to turn in to themselves as they get more serious. The desire to "nest" together is natural and if it doesn't happen, it can be a red flag. So I personally think it's good that you want to hang with your hubby on Fridays rather than go out. I get that same way in relationships. Nights with Netflix and my boy are much preferred.

    I've always been so afraid of getting married and losing myself. I am so career driven and so independent and so flirty and I would hate to lose that with marriage. It's scary because when I describe myself, those are the words I use and if I lost that, I don't know who I would be. But really, when you join yourself with another person you really are gaining so much as opposed to losing.

    This is perfect.

    Em
    Tightrope to the Sun

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    1. it's a hard adjustment. i was super career driven, like perhaps a little too much, before i got married, & finding a balance between the two is hard. so worth it, but so hard. i love your thoughts though--with your sweet comments & in reading your blog as well. you are a beautiful person & i am glad we found each other via the web. :)

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  5. this post was like peering into your soul. seriously, though. i agree on a lot of what you said-when you get married, your identity becomes you AND your husband, not just you anymore. it's like it's a package deal, which can be great, but it can also become easier to get lost and not really know who you are anymore. i went through this shortly after tay and i got married-adjusting to not being around my friends, or really anyone i knew, we depended on taylor's family and his friends a lot more, and i became "tay's wife". once i took some time for me, and started doing things i enjoyed, i was able to find myself again and become someone (and am still becoming that person) who i want to be, not just an attachment of tay (not that that is bad, but you know what i'm getting at-it's important to have your own identity, for YOURSELF). i think a lot of that had to do with the fact that i didn't see myself going anywhere-i wasn't finishing school, i had no real goals..wake up, go to work, come home, make dinner, watch tv, go to bed and do it all over again. now that i have my etsy store, and tay is graduating in may, there's a light at the end of the tunnel and we are both figuring out what we want for our life, together, but still incorporating ourselves in it. hopefully that makes sense haha now i'm just rambling but i sure do miss you, girl, hopefully i'll get to see your cute self soon!

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  6. i can guarantee that you and i would hit it off as friends. i'm just pretty sure about that. me + you + madi should all hang out or something. also, by the looks of this post i don't think you're so bad at intra personal relations. being plagued by the idea that you don't know is a sign that you are in tune with yourself, i think. i am taking interpersonal communications this semester, too by the way

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  7. how long have you been married? i've been married for four months, and i feel very similar. i used to be so confident and out-going and friendly, and now i feel very dependent upon my husband and very much like he is my only friend. he's not possessive or manipulative in the least, it's just that i've let myself sort of melt into him and that's all. haha, it sounds scary. i guess it is scary. i recently discovered something the other day, though. dallas and i were driving each other crazy, and so i just sat down and did something that i loved all by myself. ya know, something that i never do anymore because it's not something dallas likes. and it totally made me so happy and remember what it felt like to be me a little. i highly recommend it :) go out, buy some sushi take out, do your nails, go for a run, put on a face mask, watch a chick flick, whatever. but do what makes YOU happy. it's not selfish. it just feels good. :)

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  8. lydia, this is such a good idea!!the need of having our own lives is something i didn't expect when i got married, but it's been so important in keeping us happy & keeping our relationship in a good spot. and now that you say that, i don't think i am ever alone. that's a really good idea though, taking some time for myself. perhaps that would make me feel a little more in tune with myself. thank you for sharing. (& we've been married about 13 months!)

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