I Lost My Identity – Turns Out I’m Not Just “Mommy”

My husband says that the first question I asked him after we got married was, “When are we going to have kids?” I don’t remember that, but it makes sense. We had already been together for 6 years and that seemed like the next logical step. I’ve always known I wanted to be a mother.

Today we have two amazing and wonderful daughters. One is a tween (heaven, help us) and one is a pre-schooler. Being a mother is, by far, my biggest joy, blessing, and achievement. For me, though, for the past 12+ years, being a mother is, well, all I’ve been. I’ve literally lost my identity to motherhood.


Both of my girls have incredible imaginations. 70% of their young childhood years have been spent pretending. With Mommy. I’ve been everyone – from superheroes to princesses, to Teletubbies – I have run the gamut. I should literally be nominated for an Oscar, an Emmy, and a Tony simultaneously for all of the characters I have successfully played. I have also been their cook, maid, driver, disciplinarian, teacher, nurse, and friend – everything that fits under the umbrella of “mom”. And I’ve forgotten who else I am.

[bctt tweet=”I’ve been everyone – from superheroes to princesses. #momlife” username=”mommyopoly”]

Lately, I’ve run myself ragged. I’ve always been a martyr mom, giving to everyone else first and putting self-care last on my list, and it has only resulted in resentment and a perpetual state of frustration and sadness. I have exhausted myself trying to be everything I think I should be as a mother and I have finally hit my limit. While I have two of the most amazing children in the whole wide world, being a mom is far from easy, and when you give all of yourself to other people, you deplete all of your resources.

[bctt tweet=”Being a mom is far from easy. #momlife ” username=”mommyopoly”]

This is has caused me to re-evaluate and I’ve started to remember that, while being a mother is more special than I could have ever imagined and I love my girls with my whole heart, there is much more to me than motherhood. Turns out, I’m not just “Mommy”.

Actually, my name is Sheri. In addition to being a mother, I am a wife (my poor hubby has definitely taken a back seat to parenting), a daughter, a sister, an aunt, a niece, a cousin, and a friend. I am a comedian – not to toot my own horn (toot toot), but I can actually make you laugh when you don’t even want to smile. I am a writer (published, even!). And I’m finally starting to come public with some very intimate, personal issues, and, in doing so, am becoming an advocate for mental health.

I’ve decided that it is actually more than okay to nourish these other aspects of myself, as well. It’s okay to ask the kids to play by themselves or (gasp) with each other while I work on something for myself. That concept has always been foreign to me. It always seemed selfish. I’m learning that isn’t so. It’s actually beneficial to them to spend some time entertaining themselves, as well. Wow!

In my eyes, being an incredible mother will always be the most important part of who I am, but, in order to be that mom, I need to rediscover these other parts of me. I need to explore those avenues and help them grow again. I need to remember that it’s all of these things that make up who I am, and that is entirely a wonderful thing.

  • If you’ve reached a point in your life where you are questioning who the hell you are, remind yourself that it’s okay, healthy even, to take a step back and see what you’ve been hiding inside.

  • Show yourself, and your children, that they can be anything they want to be and that they really can have it all.

  • Give ‘em heck, <insert your actual name here>! We can be great moms AND great whatever-the-heck-else we want to be!

    Let’s do this!

Identity of MomSheri Schooley is a sarcastic, witty, self-deprecating, (almost) middle-aged, hilarious wife to a hot hubs and mother of two incredibly amazing daughters. She enjoys spending time with her family, as well as making people laugh. She currently resides in the way-too- hot State of Florida and is phenomenal at complaining about it. Sheri expresses herself best through the written word and hopes that you’ll be able to connect with her through her stories of relationships, parenting, and neuroses. She can be found on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/mommyopoly, on Twitter @mommyopoly, and on her blog at www.mommyopoly.com.