I started Run Like a Mom as part of a personal journey, as a means of finding my own voice amid the very loud and demanding voices of children. And also, if I’m to be completely honest, as a means of stopping the constant nagging from well-intentioned friends and family. They wanted me to write again, to find an outlet for the thoughts that constantly stream through my head. They might regret the nagging, because now that the thoughts have started, they show no signs of stopping.
The thing is, it’s hard to find your own voice when you have traded it in for a Mom Voice. If you’re a mom, you know what I mean.
Don’t get me wrong, I wanted to have children, and I love being their mom. I’m also incredibly grateful that I am one of the fortunate few who get to spend this formative time with them.
But make no mistake that there is a trade off that women make when they decide to have children – and it’s not easy. Where once you were a Someone in your own right, upon having children that Someone pales into insignificance in the face of being Someone Else’s Mom. And somewhere, along the way, that Someone becomes a little lost.
(I’m not speaking for Dads here, not because I don’t believe that their lives change irrevocably when they become parents, but simply because I’m not a Dad.)
Every Mom’s journey is different, but for me, the journey of rediscovery of self began with finding something that I loved doing – not something for those very special Someone Else’s, but something just for me.
It started with a small group of moms, who met at school to run every morning. We started with 3km around the school. We met three or four times a week, we progressed to 10km, and entered a couple of races. Some of us got injured (me included), some of us entered half marathons, and full marathons and ultra marathons (not me). Some started working again, some moved schools, and weren’t able to join the morning run anymore. I found other moms who run, and started running with them too.
The group has splintered a little of late, and I miss it terribly, but I shall be forever grateful for what it gave me – not only in terms of friendships, but mostly in terms of helping me find a piece of myself that I thought was lost. For the first time, in a long time, I began doing something just for me. And in so doing, I rediscovered that Someone who I once was.
Run Like a Mom is a blatant, and purposeful plagiarism of Run #Like a Girl, which encourages girls around the world to own being a girl. For me, this blog represents not only my first real attempt to own the fact that I am a Mom, but also my on-going struggle to find balance between the Someone I once was, and the Someone’s Mom I am now.
These two separate, but equally important parts of my life, are represented by the two categories of writing that you will find on this blog: Running Around, aka Parenting; and Just Running, which speaks for itself.
The more I run, the more I talk, the more I write, the more I discover how many moms feel the same way I do. It’s time someone said it out loud.
For more on the whys and wherefores of Run like a Mom, read my first blog post: Run Like a Mom.