Everyday Life

the identity struggle

I really have been feeling this call to be honest on the blog lately. Most of the time I post funny stories with pictures of the girls acting so cute and I make fun of how stinker-ish they are.

But honestly, I’ve been struggling. I feel like I have a “platform” in a way with this blog since I have a handful of readers, especially mom readers. And if I am constantly blogging about how everything is so wonderful and filled with fun I’m not being completely honest and not using the platform properly.

Since moving to Tennessee I have felt lost. I know so many people, yet I know no one. I just moved from a town where I had wonderful friends and a church I was really involved in. I had a place. I had finally found my way in the mom world and found a place that I felt I belonged.

I feel like now I am mourning the loss of that identity and am struggling to find my place again.

I have talked to so many women who are stay-at-home moms, and also working moms, who experience this same struggle. Once you have children, your identity is so easily lost in your kids that it is hard to find your place with your husband, in your home, with your kids, in the community, etc. So even though I am not a new mom necessarily anymore, I am experiencing this same feeling again.

On top of all of that, we have had extreme circumstances since being here. Living with my parents for a month and Andy being out of town the week we moved in meant I was on my own with the kids for a really long time and I can admit that my patience is and was waning thin. My car breaking down and all the stress that went with that, me unpacking essentially by myself, my foot being broken, living in a rental that had a “pee room” (that finally has new carpet)…. must I go on?

To add to all of that, I have been reliving all that we went through this time last year with Ryder. Which is a whole ‘nother area I struggle with as far as my identity goes. I’ve tried to be a voice for CHD’s because I was blissfully unaware of them until Ryder. But, Ryder’s defects weren’t as complex as others and she is considered “fixed” at this point. And to be frankly honest with you I have been treated in the medical world and by some other heart moms (definitely not all!) like Ryder’s case was no big deal and I need to get over it. You wouldn’t believe what people have said to me about it. A heart mom in my area at Paris came to me AFTER the entire saga of Ryder (like four months after) and said some really hurtful things about how much more severe her child was and basically that Ryder was nothing compared.

So I’ve been grasping to find my identity in a lot of areas…

and then it hit me.

Why am I grasping so desperately to find my identity when, as a Christian, my identity should be found in Christ alone? How foolish I have been wallowing in my sorrows of “identity” when I should be standing on the identity of Christ.

Of course, as a sinful human, it isn’t that easy. I often wonder in anger at myself how it was so easy (truly, it was) to give Ryder to the Lord, yet it has been so very hard to give up circumstances of today to Him. I’ve been wondering why I haven’t made a single friend yet, why aren’t my children obeying me, why isn’t my husband listening to me… why am I having such a hard time?

And then I hear it, sometimes soft and low and sometimes loud and clear, Jesus is calling me to Him. He wants me to lean on Him like I so quickly did with Ryder.

That’s one of the most beautiful things with a relationship with Christ, He wants it all. He wants the big things like a precious sick baby and He wants the little things like my car is broke.

He CARES about it all. He tells us over and over to not be worried in the Bible (Matthew 6:25, Luke 12:22, Philippians 4:6). He says in Psalms 55:22, “Cast your cares on the Lord and he will sustain you; He will never let the righteous be shaken.”. Jesus says in John 14:1, “Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God, trust also in me.”.

As I was searching through my Bible this morning for verses I had highlighted through Ryder’s journey, I came across this passage- “When times are good, be happy: but when times are bad, consider: God has made one as well as the other.” Ecclesiastes 7:14.

God has made one as well as the other.

If we never went through tough times, times in which we truly struggle, how would we learn to lean on Jesus? What would our testimony be without the trials, big and small?

I want my life to be an encouragement to others going through hard times. I want to make sure I’m praising God through every storm, no matter how big or small.

Thankfully God’s grace has covered me, once again, and I can be redeemed and turned away from the self pity and sin I’ve been living in.

My prayer for sharing all of this with you is that you feel like you aren’t alone in your struggle. And for you to recognize that God’s grace is made perfect in weakness.

“My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness. Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.” 2 Corinthians 12:9

I don’t have to struggle with my identity if I’m leaning on God and His wonderful grace to redeem me. Which means you don’t have to struggle either.

I’m praying that anyone who has read this will feel whole in Christ today. I’m praying you find your place, and that I find mine, which is in Christ, praising Him through your struggle.

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11 thoughts on “the identity struggle

  1. Hey Tiff, thanks for posting. I read your blog occasionally when it pops up on my newsfeed, but I really loved this one. Your honesty was refreshing and I’m sorry you’re having such a hard time. I’m not a wife or a mom yet, but I totally can relate. While moving is often exciting and fun and full of possibilities, it also sucks because you don’t know anyone or feel known by anyone. Those relationships take time. For me, its helped to repeat to myself, “I am not alone and God knows me.” You’re right, he does want it all. Thanks for the encouragement

  2. your blog is a true blessing, I needed this today. I have been struggling with Sara being away at college, trying to figure out my new role with empty nest

  3. Wow!! You helped me a lot with a situation I’m dealing with at work. Thank you for sharing and bring God’s voice to me!!

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