Women wear many hats: wife, mother, daughter, sister, friend, co-worker, CEO of the family, chauffeur, chef, nurse, etc. Sometimes we lose sight of who we are, while juggling all that we do. We think there is a right way or wrong way to juggle it all, when really it is about who you are, while you juggle, that really matters. When you are living as you, not some replica or carbon copy, there is magic. The magic in the makeup of you, helps you to find balance, joy and fulfillment.
When I left my fashionable career to lead my family, I thought the days of my shoe affair were over and I needed to invest in some UGGS, Dansko’s, or another form of casual footwear; yoga pants and cotton T-shirts were in my future. From what I knew of being a SAHM, which was nothing by the way, my identity would be on hold for a few years. Cardigans, here I come! I could not have been more mistaken. All that thinking did was provide me with occasional moments in time where the hat I was wearing needed to be swapped out with the next hat, leaving a slight lapse of consciousness, and creating unusual actions, strange thoughts, weird reactions, all with a hint drama. I had forgotten who I was.
In the 1957 Academy Award winning movie, The Three Faces of Eve, Joanne Woodward plays Eve White, a sweet, yet timid wife and mother who suffers from headaches and blackouts that switch her into her alter ego, Eve Black – the wild, bar-hopping lady of the night. Only after some serious therapy does she discover that her real name is Jane, she is not timid, or brash, she is mild-mannered and loving but had been suppressing who she was due to traumatic events in her life. OK, maybe a bit dramatic for more simpler folk, but it is based on a true story, so…
I cannot help but laugh at the actual events that play out as “crazy” in 1957. The evil Eve Black would go to the local dress shop and order several evening gowns; she smoked some ciggies and enjoyed a good whiskey while gallivanting out in the night. Oh my! And then, it gets worse…she went shopping and hid her purchases from her husband! The lowly Eve White, on the other hand, loved playing the part of the door mat while she sat and read, cooked and cleaned. She did love her family, but had lost all sense of identity.
Every hat we wear is different – some serious and stiff, some soft and fuzzy, a professional hat or whimsical hat; even humorous or serious hats are all part of this season of leading. The key is to remain who you are, while you wear each hat. And to assume that if you are leading your family, instead of leading a company, you are destined to only wear bonnets, well then, you are gravely mistaken.
Women are amazing creatures, full of love, beauty, mystery, wonder and incredible capabilities. Our family’s need us in so many different ways and we answer those calls even while attempting to answer our own. We cannot forget to fill our own souls and refresh our own spirits so that we have something to pour into others. Maybe Eve needed those three sides to be balanced in her life? Maybe a wild night out once in a while helped her cope with the day-to-day of chaperoning, chauffeuring and baby feeding? Maybe she loved cooking and cleaning after that night out – with a thankful heart and lifted spirits, she scrubbed that toilet!
Your passions, your hobbies and your loves are what fuel you to live true to who you are. Your family needs you, not Martha Stewart, or Oprah, or even Victoria Beckham….you. Two years later, I am finally remembering who I am – and living it with heart towards home – learning to project the me I know to be my true identity. It’s liberating, full of freedom and the best part – its FUN!
I love playing with hair and makeup; I have a healthy relationship with shoes; living a great adventure with God and promoting health and wellness in my community. I’m passionate about helping others succeed and reach their goals; encouraging; loving; thrive when inspiring others – and feel the most fulfilled when I am reflecting the heart of Jesus in all I do.
Your turn, take a moment to make a list (lists rock, by the way) of the things that bring you joy:
- What brings you peace?
- What refreshes and invigorates to you?
- Where do you “come alive” ?
- What stirs your passion for people?
- Who are you?
- Who would your friends say you are?
When you identify these things it is much easier to go after them. Reclaim your passions, be true to who you are and your family will fall in love with you all over again because the real you will be shining through, ever so brightly. Your light will inspire them, it will lead others, and the more you walk in it – you will reflect who you were created to be: in the image of the Father.