Thursday, September 16, 2010

Piaget, self-actualization, and how I love my babies...

So Jean Piaget has been dead for how long?  Not the point though I guess... what matters are the physiological theories that he has left behind...

Self Actualization.

It's an interesting thing really, and relates a great deal to the way I've been feeling lately.  Well, not the concept itself but the way that it relates to parenting really.  You see, I've decided that it is impossible (almost) for a parent to strive for any type of self awareness while having young children.  At least not when we consider good parents.  I'm sure the parents who choose to put themselves before their children are able to think of themselves and move themselves forward in the world...

As for those of us who adore our children, and (whether intentionally or not) always put them first, we often loose ourselves after our babies are born.  I patiently (and boredly) sit in the waiting room of the dance academy every week while my little girl twirls and taps her way to happiness.  I sit quietly holding my son while he nurses to sleep, ignoring my thirst or need to use the bathroom at times.  The closest I've come to a mani/pedi since my daughter was born was given to me by said daughter.  I used to schedule my bi-monthly nail appointments weeks in advance, now I find myself far too aware of the waisted money and waisted time that the appointments will cost me.  I used to write, and read, for pleasure. Now I color and read children's books six at a time.  I use to stay out all night... now I'm just up all night.. at home... cuddling a teething baby or soothing a sick child. 

I'm a completely different person now.  I can't say that I'm striving to find myself and achieve self-actualization... at the moment, my only true calling is to be Mommy, and those of my children late at night when they awake, scared, in the dark.  I may not be achieving monumental success at the moment... and I may not achieve self-actualization in this life (I doubt I will!)... but I do

 know that I would rather love every minute of raising my babies then find the real me in the mix. 

Maybe one day, after my kids are old enough to wipe their own noses and buckle their own seat belts, I'll find a little time to think about just me...

But as much as I try to carve out a little time to write here or a little time for a manicure there, I will never again be the self-absorbed individual of my high school days.  And I don't mind that at all.  My purpose in this world is no longer what it once was.  I am not here to achieve only my goals, I'm here to help my children achieve theirs.  I'm still working toward mine, I'm just working down a different path these days.  I'm still getting a degree, just a couple of years after my friends.  I'm still going to make a lot of money one day, but right now my only personal income comes in the form of hugs and kisses. 

So Piaget, I don't need your theories... I'll choose my babies over fully understanding myself and achieving my full potential any day.

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