As a twenty-something, I’ve always had this immense pressure surrounding me to keep up with everyone else and if someone younger than me or my best friend was achieving more than me, I was somehow failing. Maybe it was a “false truth” I learned in high school with the competition to have the highest grade or be known as the best in something, but the desire to keep up with everyone else only became stronger after leaving high school when life really started to matter and every decision counted. But that’s not really the truth at all and ultimately, God never designed me to do what everyone else was doing. I was created uniquely and I’m following a path different from the rest of the people living in this world. It’s so easy to forget your purpose when surrounded by society giving you the wrong message.
When I was pregnant with my daughter, I knew I was going to struggle with no longer feeling as successful as everyone else because having a baby certainly slows your life down. I was worried I would have to give up pursuing having a business and spend all day long taking care of someone other than myself. Which is a pretty selfish thing to think, but hey, I was young and I was learning. Once my daughter was actually here, everything felt impossible. It felt like an uphill battle to just feel like myself. To remember who I was and what I enjoyed doing before I spent all day long sitting and nursing my newborn. And that’s when postpartum anxiety got its grubby little hands on me.
After talking to some women on a Facebook group after someone shared an article about postpartum anxiety, I realized what I was feeling was not only normal, but I would be able to overcome it with some outside help. I’ll write a post specifically about this a little later. It took a few weeks to identify where my anxiety was coming from and how I could change those situations to create positive experiences rather than continue to filter lies into my head. Social media and the way it constantly made me feel behind or not enough was one of the first places I would have to tackle. I searched the Bible for truth about what God intended my identity to be and compared that to what I thought my identity was and it turns out to be more than just what you write on your Instagram profile. I am more than just a mom, I’m a daughter, a wife, a seamstress, a cook, a housekeeper, a friend, etc. I want to challenge you to create a mind-map of all that you are and redefine your standard of success. Allow that standard to only be for you, no one else, no comparisons to someone else’s success, just you. Somedays, success looks like having a drinking all of you coffee before it gets cold, and that’s ok. Other days might look like making a big sale in your online shop, and that’s good too. Every day, success might look different and that doesn’t make one day less successful than the others, that just means that you finally learned what it means to have grace.
Words by Katie Kline
Image by Char Co.