I haven’t felt like myself lately. Lately being, oh, the last 6 months or so? A year? I’ve lost track.

I used to be a really positive person. I was always the one assuring Chris that God had a plan for our life even when we had our third unplanned pregnancy. I always could find the good in my day, joy in my kids and laughter in the midst of incredible stress. I didn’t let the fact we had no money bother me too much, I made time for my friends as often as I could and I had a job that fulfilled all parts of my creative being. I was happy. And even when I wasn’t I was still positive.

But not so much lately. Lately I have been quick to anger and slow to let go of a grudge. Most mornings I wake up in a bad mood and either stick with it all day or try my best to kick it to the curb, usually with little success. I worry and stress about things I used to trust God to handle. Money makes me cry on a weekly if not daily basis. I’ve let go of friendships because I can’t balance it all anymore. I’m always playing devils advocate and looking at my world with the glass half empty.

The strange part though is that sometimes I feel like my old self. I have great days sometimes! And on those days I do projects with the kids, cook meals, call friends, greet Chris with a smile and enjoy my life. And the funkified part of myself seems far away.

But that funk is coming back faster and carrying more weight lately. The funk has been harder to kick.

And when i’m in that funk all of my thoughts are totally selfish. Hating C’s coaching because it means I’m alone with the kids every night for dinner/bath/bed. Wanting time off, time away, time to myself. Wishing for something I never have and can’t articulate when I try. Yelling at the kids over silly things and greeting Chris at night with a bad attitude and grumpy demeanor. Not calling or talking to anyone, almost hiding at home, becoming hermit-like.

Last night it came to a head when I got a sitter at the last minute and went to what I thought would be C’s last basketball game. They were the lower ranked team and if they lost it meant Chris would be home the rest of the week in the late afternoon… meaning I had HELP and RELIEF and SUPPORT for the dinner/bath/bed time of day. And so i went to the game praying they’d lose.

But they won.

And as I watched that small group of 17 year old girls cheering and jumping with the excitement of moving on in districts I had to get out of there quick so I could cry in the car all the way home. Because it meant another week of no Daddy. It also meant absolutely NO break between the basketball and soccer season, that starts on Monday.

Oh doggies did I feel sorry for myself!

And when Chris got home MAN was I in a mood. One I couldn’t hide from him. One I didn’t want to hide I guess. I was mad. And the more angry i got at how this effected ME the sadder I got and more confused as to how I could be SO SELFISH to be upset at the best night in those girls lives.

So I went to bed confused. And sad. And really frustrated at myself. And that’s when I asked myself, WHERE DID I GO?

Is it hormones? Is it depression? Is it stress? Is it lack of sleep? Too much soda? Not enough good food? No exercise?

Or is it just the new me?

I talked to my friend Angie about it today and she assured me that she feels the same way too sometimes. That all mothers must go through this. And she encouraged me to write about it. So here i am. Writing.

Being honest. And open.

I wonder if I’ve lost myself to three pregnancies in three years. Jumping straight from marriage to babies. Did I lose myself to motherhood? Could it just be that winter is dragging out? Do I just need a vacation? Bible study? A good run? A break? I feel stuck, lost and not sure how to move forward. Do I seek counciling? Do I talk to my doctor in case it is hormones? Do I seek medication for depression? Do I start running? Stop soda completely? Sleep more?

I’ve never been here before and it’s a bit scary. I don’t want my husband to wonder which wife he’s coming home to each night. I don’t want to loose track of friends because I’ve become a hermit. I don’t want my kids to act a certain way so as not to upset Mommy. I want to wake up each day excited about what lies ahead! I want to love my work again, enjoy the kids and not get mad every time Chris walks out the door. I want to smile more. Laugh out loud. Be grateful for what we have.

I want to be myself again.

And what I’m hoping, is that by writing this, by tossing yet another huge struggle out into the void, that it’s the first step to finding myself. Finding my joy.

Here’s hoping!