Musings of a Momma Bear: Anchor Point
Pin in a Map and Purpose, Part 1
I have a sign in my window. It's a piece of paper with my messy handwriting. It's been there for months, to the point I look at it without really seeing it anymore. But the other day I read it again, "Major life changes are a chance to redefine your purpose. I will live by example." Oh, man. I wrote this note to myself. I have not followed by own advice. Nope, I've been freaking out. For a while now.
It's called an existential crisis. Sounds fancy, like some hoity toity term I learned in philosophy and never, ever expected to experience myself. But I have.
I was divorced in August 2019. I went from 100% full-time mom of five to 50% mom of five struggling to find direction. Struggling to find direction went to lost. Completely. Wholly. Utterly, hopelessly lost on a dark road that dead-ended into an insurmountable wall. I have literally spent the last year or so questioning everything. My faith. My ability. My worth. My purpose. What exactly was the point of any of this awful thing called life? Was there a God? What I important for anything in this world to continue?
My life's purpose, from a very young age, was to grow up and have children and be a momma bear. I loved it. The hard days. The easy days (what are those, exactly?). The impossible days. It was exhausting, but I loved it. When the judge ordered me to be away from them half their lives, everything I thought I knew about myself cascaded down around me. Not a pretty waterfall cascade or remnants of fireworks burning, sparkling as they float gently to the ground. A building, giant broken pieces of concrete and dust and nastiness collapsing on top of me.
If you've never felt that crushing sense of pointlessness, I am not sure I can accurately help you feel it. When you wake up in the morning and see the sun shining, it doesn't bring a renewed sense of hope for the day. It brings to mind the ever-present question, "What's the point?" When your children laugh and it normally fills you with joy, it no longer does. What's the point? If all we are ever going to do is die, what's the point of living? If no one in this world actually needs you in order for them to smile and make it through today, what's the point?
Take a moment and try to really internalize that thought. I was going through every minute of my day wondering what was the point. Why is there a reason for me, or any of us, to be here? There is no reason for it. This wasn't just depression. It wasn't just fear or sadness or anger. It was nothing. And that's what was so scary. I had no point. No reason to be here. My children could survive without me. I was not a pivotal cog in anyone's wheel.
Let it sink in. Feeling that way...
I'll be back tomorrow with the rest of this story, after you've maybe contemplated that ugly question for a few hours. I hope to see you here!
About the Author
Sara L. Foust is a mother of 5, girlfriend of 1, daughter, sister, friend, graduate student, medical transcriptionist, substitute teacher, Christian, author, editor, proofreader...busy momma bear...who loves books, writing, her family, and East Tennessee. Connect with her at her website or find her books on Amazon.