When I was a little girl, I wanted to be a.... drum roll, please: housewife.
I wanted to be a housewife. I also wanted to be Madonna, or like Madonna; I wanted to dance and sing and wear short skirts and lace. And then I wanted to be a soap opera actress and then a sitcom or movie actress, maybe a director, and then a writer-- books and screenplays. As I got a little older, pre-teens, I thought about becoming an herbalist, or a witch. And in high school and college, it was back to wanting to be a writer and perhaps a psychologist, or music video editor. I also had some dreams of one day learning CranioSacral Therapy and studying nutrition with Paul Pitchford. And then I ended up married and in law school, before dropping out and getting divorced of course.
But I never stopped also wanting to be a housewife. Until my divorce, and then I started to question it all.
Who am I? What am I doing? Do I even want to be a mom? And then for several years I focused on getting to know myself, learning how to be happy on my own, building a career, traveling the world, etcetera etcetera. I gave up this vision of being married with children until a few years ago, when I met a sweet little angel who touched my heart and brought that dream back to life. She helped me realize I do want to be a mom, even if "just" a step mom. And that leads to what came up today.
And what came up today was this question: What do you wanna be when you grow up? It was meant to be an innocent, playful, light-hearted question. A joke even. A question I asked the new man in my life this afternoon. But when he turned it back to me, I felt thrown off by the very first thing that popped into my head. I even felt a little embarrassed or afraid to say it out loud.
I laughed before saying it, and then provided a disclaimer that it must be the little girl in me who was saying this, since I grew up seeing my mom model this stay-at-home-to-take-care-of-the-kids-and-house-and-dog-and-husband (not neccesarily in that order) type of life. But why? Why did I feel the need to "blame it" on my inner child?
Partially because it's true; I saw my mom living a lifestyle and having these roles that appealed to me. But also because of fear. The fear of it being a turn off. Aren't men turned off by women who say things like that? The fear of it not happening. The fear of it just sounding like "not enough--" I mean aren't I this independent, empowered, entrepreneur woman? Shouldn't my response be something more like, "I already am grown up," or "I'm already doing it," or "When I grow up, I wanna be a successfully published author who coaches her readers and students and also leads women's empowerment and Sheng Zhen retreats and classes, and that's right where I'm headed!"?? Hmmm....
So I said it. Sheepishly instead of boldly. I said the h-word and then went on babbling about other things I envisioned for my future, almost as if to cover up or make ok what I'd just revealed. I suppose I forgot that who I am and what I want is inherently ok regardless of what anyone, including myself, thinks. I forgot that I really, deeply, truly want this man to see and know the real me. And I suppose I forgot that answers to questions like this are complex, that it's not so black or white, not so either/or; I can want it all and have it all as both a housewife and an "independent, empowered, entrepreneur," but I also don't have to want it all. I can also change my mind.
And as I drove home, I realized that none of my ramblings about the future even specified any of the things that I'm currently doing-- like being a writer or a teacher or a coach. Oops! ;) But I decided not to read into that. Instead I decided I'd just need to ponder this question a little bit more. And perhaps even more importantly, I needed to ponder those fears, especially that first aspect of my fear, that fear of my honesty turning someone off, especially someone I like. So I took all of that with me into a Rebirthing (breathwork) session, and here's what came out:
When I grow up, I just wanna be me. And discovering what that means more and more, what that looks like, is part of the journey, part of what I'm here to re-member and step in to more fully. When I grow up, I want to feel happy and free and spend lots of fun times with loved ones who accept me and love me as I am. I want to spend lots of time out in nature. I want a life full of laughter and a life that has made a difference in other people's lives. That sounds a lot like how my life is now. But when I grow up, I wanna be even more fully me than I am today. What does that mean? That means I want to keep growing and that despite how far I've come, despite how confident and authentic and in alignment I am at times, and all the self-knowledge I already possess, I'm also well aware that there are still fears and doubts and old patterns holding me back, getting in my way, clouding my vision and affecting my behavior. And so when I grow up, I wanna be as crystal clear and truly me as I can possibly be. And from there, from that place of presence, authenticity, and alignment, everything will fall into place.
So, my dear reader, here are some questions for you:
What do you wanna be when you grow up? ;)
Where is fear, rather than Love, running the show?
What's one step you can take this week to feel more aligned with your Truth?
Rebecca Clio Gould is a Holistic Health Coach and Mentor specializing in women's sexuality and spirituality, as well as trauma recovery. She is also a Sheng Zhen Teacher, Supreme Science Qigong Instructor, Writer, and Author of "The Multi-Orgasmic Diet: Embrace Your Sexual Energy and Awaken Your Senses for a Healthier, Happier, Sexier You."