When I was seventeen I fell in love with a city of lights. The idea of endless possibilities overwhelmed my heart every time I set foot in this city. I felt creative there, I felt inspired. “This is where it is going to happen”, I thought, envisioning my garment sketches coming to life in the streets of Chicago.
Having a baby was never part of the plan, especially at eighteen.
I always knew I wanted to be a mother one day, but I had so many dreams I wanted to accomplish first.
I can almost guarantee you there isn’t a young mother/single mother who doesn’t feel they let go of a piece, if not their entire dream to accommodate their little blessing. And that’s fine, children do require sacrifice (and they are worth every single one).
However, a couple of years after having my son my heart was constantly yearning for that feeling I felt standing in the streets of downtown Chicago, looking up at all those glimmering lights of inspiration
I visited Chicago for the first time in years a couple of weekends ago. And it felt like no time passed. As I approached the river walk I could envision the day I sat on those steps above the river with my Caribou Coffee in hand, headphones blaring J.Cole’s Friday Night Lights, just going to town on a blank sketchbook. That beautiful city held onto my memories for me, just like I asked it to.
As I grew older my interests changed and my dream of being a designer diminished on its own. Being back in that city did not inspire me to design again, but it inspired me to do what I love, no matter what that may be. That “endless possibilities” feeling came rushing back to my soul like it had been waiting for us to reunite for all this time. I was given a glimpse back into the heart of that seventeen year old girl from Rockford, who had finally found her “special place”.
Motherhood changed my life, but it did not end it. I think we, as mothers, need to remind ourselves of this more often.
Our children want us to pursue our dreams, not settle for mediocrity. That feeling of euphoria that overcomes me when I am creating is the same feeling I want my son to feel one day when he takes that leap of faith towards his dream. And that got me thinking even deeper, how can I tell him to follow his heart if I did not follow my own?
Change isn’t giving up; doing nothing is giving up.
So let’s take a moment to reacquaint ourselves with that rugged, undefined soul we once had. Let us never forget where our hearts stood when we had that constant lust for life.