Somewhere along this road I lost “me.”
As I write my book The Boys I Left in Paris (you can read an excerpt here) I’ve been re-reading my journals from when I was in France in my early 20s. It feels like I am reading about the life of someone else.
Granted, there is absolutely no part of me that wants to be out in nightclubs until 4:30am every weekend living the wild and crazy life, but there is a part of me that is nostalgic for the naive girl who still believed in everything. Well, I guess I didn’t believe in Santa Clause anymore at 22/23 years old, but I still believed that I could change the world, that I would change the world, that people are inherently good, and that if you work hard, you will get what you deserve.
I was going to join the Peace Corps or Amnesty International or work in the United Nations.
I never did. I did other things.
Less than 15 years later, instead of changing the world, the world has changed me.
Life changed me.
Children have changed me.
Not all for the bad.
Now I look into the eyes of three young, hopeful children who do still believe in everything (including Santa Clause!) and more than anything I want to teach them to always believe in themselves, in love, in good. In compassion.
The last year has been about me. My grief, my pain, my loss. Now it’s time to make it about them. I can still be me while being a good mother to them.
Now I can be there for them. At this critical time in their young lives I can provide them all the tools they need to be enough. More than enough.
I can still be me while also being mommy.
Maybe though them I can still save the world.