A friend from Mom’s group gave me this book to read called, “Freefall to Fly: A Breathtaking Journey Toward a Life of Meaning” by Rebekah Lyons.
I don’t normally get sucked into this type of book. But I totally did.
It’s a woman’s story about uprooting her three kids in the suburbs to move with her pastor husband to the city. I felt an immediate kinship. Of course, she moved to New York, which is a significantly higher level of urban than San Francisco.
One page in particular jumped out at me. The emphasis is hers:
“Even more shocking is the number of women suffering depression. The more I dug into the problem, the more I realized its vastness. I discovered that we as women are 70 percent more likely than men to experience depression. One in four women will suffer some form of depression in her lifetime. From anxiety attacks, as in my case, to mood disorders, schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and so on, women are under siege. And the majority of women who are wrestling with depression fit nicely in the twenty-five- to forty-four-year-old age bracket.
We aren’t depressed because we are getting old; we are depressed in the prime of our lives.
During the years when we ought to be making some of our greatest contributions to others and to the world, we are stuck. Caught in a quagmire of confusion, hardly able to put one foot in front of the other. What is going on? And why now?” –Freefall to Fly by Rebekah Lyons p.67
It’s no mystery to me that my best energy is required to foster new life, namely my beautiful babies. But sometimes I feel like I’m undergoing a long slow death of self while I’m busy making sure this mothering life gets done.
I wonder whether this “death of self” is healthy or unhealthy. I do have moments where I feel fully alive. But is it so inconceivable that I feel like that all the time?
Most of my days are spent with a nagging sense in the back of my brain that something is being left undone, something more than the laundry and my to-do list. Is there more resistance at play than just my full mommy schedule?
I know I am more than a mother. I know the world needs something from me outside of my useful womb.
But how? And what? And when?