It was my senior year in high school. The crowds were fun. People were laughing. We had zero cares in the world. Our basketball team was one of the best in the state and we loved cheering for them. After the game, we’d all head over to Saggios. This was a time when friends were wild and free. We may have had our own troubles at home, but being at the games and parties helped us forget about that, even if it was only for a while. It was fun!
In high school, my group of friends was the life of the party.
When there was something fun to do, we were there. It was a difficult balance because I was a star student, a Christian, and a really good kid. Being a cheerleader and co-chair of the spirit committee for Student Senate had its perks, but it also had its downfalls. Maintaining a good-girl image while simultaneously being invited to every single party in school was hard! Ultimately, my reputation went from being a “holy roller” to being a fun and crazy chick.
On school nights or weekends, we were always “down for whatever.”
As a teen, you begin to think that this is a cool way to live. It is fun for everyone to know you and for people to like you. Sure, we had “haters,” but we also had too much fun to even care. The party life took over. I still managed to maintain good grades; however, I was drinking excessively and experimenting with more than alcohol. My good girl image was tarnished. I really didn’t care. I was addicted to fun, and at that time, fun was partying hard. Teenagers don’t really care about the repercussions. They begin to think that they are invincible.
Believe it or not, I am a college dropout who valued a fun time more than an education.
Following about four years of hardcore fun and downfalls, I knew something had to give. After a bad breakup, I met this random dude at a bar. He was living in Denver and asked for my number. Thinking nothing of it, I gave him my number. A week later, almost forgetting about the whole interaction, the random dude texted me and the rest is history.
Albuquerque was too much of a distraction for me and I needed to leave. About four months later, he asked me to move to Denver and I never looked back. The wild and crazy went out of the window when I found myself pregnant. This man and that little girl saved me. But . . . I still craved fun.
Where are all of my enneagram 7s at?
I knew my kids deserved more. I refused to let them experience a drunk mother, know what drugs were, etc. So my fun turned into parks, church, playdates, festivals, hikes, lakes, boat rides, museums, theme parks, and so on. My fun turned into bike rides, gymnastics, dance lessons, swimming lessons, and then some. It evolved into movie nights, singing to sleep, attachment parenting, and tickles. We added two more children to the mix, and the fun became threefold. But when it wasn’t fun for me, I went off on my own.
When the tasks of raising three small children become mundane, I attend an event, go on a coffee date, go outside for some air, or work out. Sometimes daily responsibilities seem like they are too much, so I call up an old friend. When I want to do something, I do it. Who says you have to throw in the towel because you are a mom? I believe that it is healthy for my kids to see a mom who serves, is connected, and a mom who needs a break. Nothing should be all-consuming, not even your husband or kids. Yeah, I said it.
I refuse to become resentful because I put myself on the back burner.
So when you see me having fun with friends, clients, or anyone other than my kids and husband, know that it is because I am not JUST a mom. I am a fun-loving woman who has been through the wringer. I go after my dreams, I always succeed, and I create the life that is worth living.
Instead of turning to the next person and gossiping about the pictures of me “living my best life,” be inspired. Know that you choose your destiny.
If you feel stuck and need some time away, or to rediscover who you were, do it!
It is possible to be fun without having to be crazy. It is possible to have fun when you have a ton of responsibilities. It’s up to you to take advantage. Disclaimer, I know it is much harder to handle when the kids are babies, but this is just a season. Rediscover yourself and report back to me when you do!
Originally published November 2019.