Survive, But Keep the Dream Alive

When I was in my third trimester with Vivi, I was working at a high stress, high intensity job taking a bajillion steps a day and doing a shitty job at managing my heart rate.  In defense of my job, it was a fast-paced role, but it was also an unusually rare high stress time.  

At that point, I was unsure what my next steps would be following the birth of my first child.  I had felt conflicted and unsatisfied in my role for a while, but loved my coworkers and managers and the thought of beginning a job hunt with a new baby felt very intimidating; especially since I was unsure whether I even wanted to stay in the same industry.  

In my heart of hearts, though I could not admit it to myself, I knew I would not be returning.  

The trauma of Vivi's birth and my battle with postpartum depression only solidified that I was in no shape to return to any job of any kind.  I was thrashing wildly just to keep my nose above the surface of the tumultuous waves I had been thrown into.  

And so, I officially became a stay at home mom.  

This new role also came with its share of conflict and emotions.  I never expected to be a SAHM for one child.  I always assumed I would return to work after the first and then stay at home for a while with the second and third.  I have no idea when, why or even how this plan formulated in my mind, but it did.  

So after being shotgunned into the world of the SAHM unknown and doing my best to keep afloat amidst postpartum depression [and keep my newborn alive], I felt lost.  

Completely, utterly lost.     

Who am I?  What is my purpose?  What do I enjoy?  Will I ever feel happy again?  Aren't mothers supposed to feel constant joy in their new roles?  Why don't I like this?

Identity crisis to the max [and that's an understatement].  So began my journey to answer these critical questions and to forge a new path into my future as a woman, a survivor, a human being, a mother and a wife.  

I learned that purpose and productivity are extremely pertinent to my daily happiness.  Connections with others, especially new moms, became critical.  Getting out of the house daily became mandatory.  And most importantly, I learned that creative expression provides balance and challenge to the monotony of day-to-day responsibility.  

I was pretty sure the answer was a blog, but I had so many questions.  I didn't know what I was doing.  And didn't everyone, their cousin and their dog have a blog?  Did I want to be just another blogger in an already flooded market?  

But I knew it was right for me and so in July of 2014, I started EE with my very first blog post and it. felt. so. good.  

From there it's grown [mostly in skill and experience on my part], and now it's a job that pays me zero money [I'm working my way up to it], but gives me daily purpose and so much joy.  

I have big dreams for the EE brand.  I have dreams of updating my site and brand to the vision in my mind.  Of hiring a few associates.  Of having a studio space to work and shoot in.  Of hosting events in said studio space.  Of making EE a place for the creative, off-beat, authentic, urban mama to stretch her creative muscle with a community of other creative, off-beat, authentic, urban mamas.  To not only support, but also encourage the creative mom to thrive.

These are some pretty lofty goals and I know they won't and can't happen overnight.  Especially because - and here's the kicker - Baby Girl Wheeler #2 will be making her entrance in just a matter of weeks and I'm pretty sure that she's going to take this progress within myself, EE and life as a SAHM and throw it all up in the air.  

But, here is what I know...

There's no way it could be any worse than the last go round.  I survived a near death complication after birth and a deep, dark postpartum depression.  So yea - been there, done that.

I won't be able to do as much with EE as my creative right brain will desire and THAT'S OKAY.

Babies don't make your dreams go away.  They just challenge you to reevaluate, adjust, adapt and grow and those are all amazing things.

So my motto from this point [5 weeks, 6 days till due date] until whenever I feel like I've got a solid footing is... 

survive, but keep the dream alive.

I will give myself the grace needed to simply survive and I will take comfort in knowing that survival does not mean my dreams have died.  

What it may mean is that blog posts will be less frequent and/or less labor intensive.  Whatever it takes to allow me to survive and bond with my new little baby.  

My instagram will however definitely be a full go [how can I not post photos of a baby?], and I'd love for you to follow along with me as I journey into second time motherhood.

I don't say this enough, but as a reader, thank you for understanding that life has its ebbs and flows and understanding that EE's going to see the effects of that [and come out of it on the other side].  

Thank you for listening and allowing me to share my thoughts, stories, and creative work on a regular basis.  You have no idea the special impact you make on my life just by reading!  

This post appeared first on Everyday Enthusiastic.  All ideas in this post are of my own opinions including any mention of companies and/or affiliate sites.  No sponsorships were involved in the creation of this post.  Photograph taken by Meredith Wheeler using a DSLR Canon Rebel T3 and edited using Photoshop CC.