Many years ago I had a conversation with my husband about who we are. His argument was that we are defined by what we do. I agreed to a point, but kept asking ‘But who are you? What makes you you?’ We’re still chuckling about that exchange. What makes you You? Here’s my take:
The beginning: I was born in Romania, in the middle of Transylvania. My childhood was idyllic, despite the existing communist regime. I credit that to my parents’ ability to keep the magic alive. When I was six, I went on a name strike, refusing to respond to anything but my middle name. Now I love it. I It takes a few good people to call it right – my mom first of all.
I write. Occasionally it comes out so right it makes me feel smug. Other times it’s the opposite. It’s a seesaw that keeps me humble. As for the dark days when nothing seems to work, that’ll be a revealing post one day soon.
I am a mother. My previous 2010 version said ‘I have two boys who play in mud up to their necks – this not a figure of speech – and believe that boundaries are more of a fictional creation than flying pigs. They are no strangers to carving with pocketknives either. I would not have it any other way.’ Current 2019 version: I have two boys, one a teenager and another on the cusp of teenagehood. I miss the roundness of their faces and arms, and the chirpy little voices, but I am grateful witness to their becoming young men.
I have one membership: I belong to the Cloud Appreciation Society. Yes, it exists. It involves (the non-productive but ever so fascinating) cloud chasing.
I am an incurable science geek. If I say Biochemistry and Cellular Biology you might turn your head and look for something less scary. But hear me out. I have learned more about myself and why I do what I do through teaching than I would learn from a psychologist. Nowadays I delight in homeschooling my youngest. The eldest has fled the homeschooling nest a year ago.
I acknowledge being human more than ever before. It’s a good place to start. Life has thrown a few curve balls at me over the last few years but I still think being alive is one of the best things that’s happened to me. The other one is being a mother.
I have a blue racing bike that I pair with for races and such, or just rides that make my heart swell in ways that cannot be explained unless you hop on one yourself and hit the road. I hike every day with our beloved dog Poppy. That is my morning meditation on the go.
One of my favorite quotes is by Helen Keller: “Security is mostly a superstition. It does not exist in nature…. Life is either a daring adventure or nothing.”