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April 30, 2006


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Those are some of the reasons I love writing, and always have. I'm glad you're finding yourself. Glad you found your blog. And I'm glad I found yours, too.

You put into words what I've been thinking about but have had trouble articulating. One of the reasons that I enjoy blogging so much is that it lets me be "me" aside from my other roles as mother, wife, and worker. It's so hard to make time for myself these days, to do things because I enjoy them and they are nurturing to me. But blogging is one way for me to let off steam, to learn, to remember, to interact -- and to let me truly be myself.

Thanks for a thought-provoking post.

Holy crap I know the feeling. I have that feeling right now. My work used to "define" me. I gave it up after my 2nd child, and was happy to do so.

But now, I've got that ache again. What's stopping me from going back is that I have a hard time finding a balance. I guess I'm an "all or nothing" kinda girl. Dammit.

I think I may have had struggles like that at first....but now I can't imagine not being with my daughter most of the days of her young life. I've embraced stopping to smell the roses. Not that I don't have a day every now and again.... I enjoyed reading your post and may stop by again soon.

Awesome piece. I've been trying to guess how it's going to hit me to be on mat leave. I'm used to having one Job Title and a few Hobbies, but it seems Mom will overshadow them all and that still seems... kinda odd. Amazing, but odd.

And it sounds like we'll all be back to read more of you we've all had the pleasure to get to know.

I know this much from blogging with you-- you are a force to be contended with.

It comes as no surprise to this reader that you wrote a dissertation in a week-- I've had the pleasure of watching you take the Blogosphere by storm.

Keep on being unstoppable, Kristen.

Lovely post.

i hear ya! that could have been coming out of my mouth. i am glad i came out from under the covers to read blogs today!

Thank you. Your post has convinced me to finally write my personal work/motherhood struggle. I'm still not sure how, but I'm determined to now that I've read this. Thank you again.

Amen. While I do still work full-time I'm having the hardest time convincing people why I'm not applying for "that great managerial job that would just take a bit more of your time". Because I don't really have any time anymore and so it would really take a bit more of my daughters time.

I've been so focused on my career and education in my life that now that I'm refocused on my daughter it's easy to feel like a piece of me is missing. It's such a conflicting feeling too because obviously being a mom is so much more fulfilling and important but we put so much emphasis on labels (even self-labels) that when they're stripped away we feel naked.

Thanks for putting it into words.

What you've written describes why I do not feel as if my lack of career ambition is a problem. While I enjoy my work and I'm good at it (and I'm thankful to be back in a position where I can use those skills), I don't have concrete aspirations. As long as I am enjoying myself and learning and I see the value in my work, then I will be happy. Because there is so much more to me than my work.

Very well written.

FYI, I found success with music therapy with my high functioning autistic daughter.

Found you over at MommyBloggers.

Thank you for putting words to my thoughts.

I have found myself wondering the same thing. WHo the hell am I without my work. And now that I've added Mother to the equation I really get lost. Who am I? If anyone knows, can you fill me in?

Kristen, I think how you equated blogging with finding yourself is brillant. Writing will do that for you. And blogging, such a personal, heart-on-your-sleeve style of writing can take you there at warp speed. It's just a great thought and I thank you for sharing your perspective on it.

As a chicky who is struggling to carve out a new identity for herself, this post resonates.

While you have my undying admiration for all that you have accomplished, and as a mom who kisses the ground her son's music therapist walks on, I appreciate your contribution to society.

As a heartbroken woman and a new blogger, you have my undying affection for making me smile, and think on a daily basis!

I can relate, on a different level though since I did not give up working. I did, however, give up my original career goals/track/etc the moment the two lines appeared on the EPT. I have so little time to myself these days with working all week and trying to fill all the other time with my family so that Grace doenst miss out on Mommy/Daddy time that I needed somewhere to simply write about what I thought. If I could meet some other Mommy-friends along the way, great!! And so I blog.

BTW---several of my friends "lurk" your site and they arent mommies! They just think you are hysterical and completely entertaining! THought you would appreciate hearing that one!

food for thought, dear Kristen, food for thought. just a few months in, i am in the "why am i really doing this?" phase of the blogging experience. this post resonates for me a great deal. danka.

I'm glad you found this site and started your blog. It makes me think, makes me laugh...

A lot of us moms gave up "who we were" to become someone else ("mom," "mommy" "mama" "ma", etc., and we understand what you're going through.

This is a great post, and I totally identify with you on it. Keep up the great writing, and we'll still come visit you on your blog.

Awe Kristen...knowing you before and after the blog, I would say that the one has made you better at the other (in both directions). You've always been an inspiration to me (and still are!) BK, AK and now, as MU.

It sounds like something very good happened on your trip to Phoenix. Your post was wonderfully written and insightful. There is a whole community that is grateful that you blog. Your voice - YOU voice is heard.

I enjoy your writing. Through this writing, I see a woman with opinions, humor, and some simply good stories.
I hope that the music finds a way to stay in your life somehow, though.

Thanks for the perspective. Though I am not a mother, I will be a father in a few short months, and I have a feeling I will need to do a little priority reorganization before that happens. I have gotten very used to being an ambitious, overworked grad student, getting by on amphetamines, caffeine, and little crumbling pieces of my soul.

Just when I get a little too used to the take-no-prisoners thing, your post comes along and sets me straight. Thanks for snapping me back to reality.

Love your writing and your thought-provoking perspective. Keep it up!

Cool. :)

big hugs for you... i don't know what it is like to stop working to stay at home, so on that regard, i can't mentally relate. but i can imagine what it must be like. i like your blog, but i don't visit often enough- not because you aren't fabulous, but because i forget. keep doing waht you do. you're liked by many!! :)

Great post. I am so glad you found yourself - and I'm so glad you write so much of yourself into this blog. I always look forward to checking your blog and seeing what you're going to say next.


What a great post Kristen. We are not our jobs, whatever the job may be and knowing ourselves makes us better at everything else. I'm so happy for you and I look forward to getting to know you better in San Jose.

That just gave me a huge smile.

Great post. Glad you found yourself. It is really hard to get past the identifying yourself as your job thing. I'm still working on that :-).

Too many people in the US define themseleves only by what they do for their job. Then when they are laid off, quit, or retire, they find themselves struggling to discover who they really are.

I'm glad you've found yourself, and can be happy with who you are and what you do. I still find myself struggling to define myself, but I'm much closer than I was before I quit my full-time job.

I can't wait to get to know you even more at Blogher!

You're right. We only know what we read - and while we read "the real you," what you did and who you were and where you came from and the rest of the prequel are not what we know. I, for one, like what I do know. And am now impressed with what I didn't know from you, BK, Before Kids, days.

Hi there - stumbled across you here from IMT. Another smart over-achiever turned mom here. LOL. Motherhood is a job - it's just a thankless one most days. It is one we won't see the daily tangible benefits of, like we did with "real" work, for, oh say, another 20 years. Not easy when you are a results-oriented person!

This is brilliantly written and will resonate with so many educated GenX moms.

It could have spilled from my own brain, less eloquently, of course.

and cheers to who you were, who you are, and who you are gonna be.


I really enjoy your blog and am glad you blog! It's nice to get to know you a little more. I quit working right after my first son was born too! Soon after, I finished an MBA and started my own business from home because we needed to supplement our income.

Anyway, I can totally relate to how you feel. I now work part time from home and don't plan on going back into the real work of work EVER!
I have no clue how you pulled off a thesis in one week! Wow!

And you thought you were just going to talk for five hours. Bonus!

But seriously...

I'm happy for you :)

I so needed to read this. Really.

I might never have *known* the difference if you had never become a blogger or if I had never come across the 'you' that expresses herself here, but there would have been a difference. A big one. You've added a lot to my experience as a mother and a blogger (and, not incidentally, as a sorta-ex-academic, which is the fresh and strange - in a good way - thing for me right now). You've made a difference.

I can relate so much. I quit my job over a year ago (not baby related, just a personal revelation that I was wasting my life) and had so much of my identiy/recognition tied up in what I did for a living, I lost myself a bit. But this year has been about discovery and re-assement. I still work (about 1/4 time) but I am spending the rest thinking, reading, traveling, on creative endeavors . . . and blogging.

And I know people make fun of blogs but I feel I have gotten to know many people on a deep, human level that is so satisfying and makes me feel less alone in the world. And I don't know you very well . . . but I can sense your depth, insight, humor, intelligence and experience (and Hill says you're an amazing person) and that's what keeps me coming back for more : ) Wishing you the best of luck with your journey . . .

Great post!

And I like your blog. A lot.

Figuring out who I am other than a person with a responsible job has been hard for me too. Even if I don't want that right now, it is hard to build a sense of self in a new way. Good to hear that your world feels so good as it is - baby, blog, etc. I am enjoying getting to know the bit of you I read here. Thanks for sharing with us!

An exercise I was once asked to do is to picture myself at my 65th birthday. Who was there and what would they say about me? It really put things into perspective.

I am so glad to have discovered your blog. You are very insightful! I usually leave here with a big smile.

Just wanted to give you hugs for that one. *big hug*

Wow, I can relate to everything you just wrote. When I worked I identified so much of who I was by what I did....for work. I didn't realize it until AFTER I gave it up. Isn't it nice to learn that and be able to find yourself? And then to be able to separate the two?

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