I am about to give birth. To a complete stranger. A person who does not know anything. Who is not formed. A person I do not know anything about. And yet, this person is a part of me, and it seems, always has been a part of me.
In a few weeks, I will give birth to a new person.
I am sitting in the office; it is one of those rare sunny days in Dublin. Yesterday's rain has gone and there are only a few scattered clouds in the sky. I am sitting at the same desk I've been sitting at for more than a year; at a job that has nothing left to offer for me. I have no passion left for it. I have other things to focus on now, bigger fish to fry, surely. This other life will come first now, won't it?
As I waddle around the office, getting my third refill of water that will make me need to get up in a few moments for the fourth time to excuse myself to the Ladies', I consider how passionate I used to be in this room. How I ran around, the next brilliant idea forming in my head, not able to contain myself, wanting more, wanting a bigger and better way of doing everything.
But a few months ago, I learned that my life was about to change, that I was expecting a child. Immediately, I lost passion for everything else. I gave up my responsibilities, I gave up promotions and extra assignments. I mentally floated off and away into the blissful prospect of motherhood and a child of my own.
An opportunity for promotion and self-fulfillment came and went; a job that should have been mine. I let an eager man take it. We all knew he was not the best for the position. Now, a few weeks later he will be removed from it again and a new hiring process has started. I laugh at his mistakes now, they are a source of amusement. It gives me joy. Why, I do not know. I did not apply, I did not want to weigh myself down.
When I first came to this desk, I had been eager, I had been devoted and passionate. I had been forceful and determined to succeed. I had been a constant over achiever, pushing myself to the limit day in day out. There was not a day when the answer to my partner's question how my day had been, did not bring up a whole parade of great new things that I had achieved. An extra mile was nothing to me; 500 extra miles were the minimum.
I cannot bring myself to see this passion for my job now. I still have it in me, for these words that I am writing, for the stories in my head. But not for the desk I am at, or the dull duties that my job brings. I cannot bring myself to devote hours of my life to this desk.
When I first learned that I was pregnant, I immediately prioritized every single thing that was going on in my life. How much of my heart was taken up by the different parts of my life. Suddenly, there was this huge new part, something that took up every single fiber of me and showed me how much love I was capable of.
And it made me realize, that I did not have the willingness anymore to do a job that I did not love. A job that I had never loved. That I had always only done, because I was good at it, because it offered a career, because it offered a paycheck. No. I had always known, this job was not for me. That knowledge did not stop me from doing overtime. It did not stop me from sinking my teeth into everything.
But now, there is a new person growing inside of me. Not only that little boy, whom I love more than anything in the world. I am growing inside of me, too.
I will be a mother in a few weeks, and it will change me. But up until now, I have always been me, haven't I? I have not changed yet, I'm still me, am I not? No.
Because there always has been a person growing in there. As long as I can remember, I have been changing. I had never thought or expected to be a mother this early in life. I had never expected, that I would be enjoying to work hard, or enjoying an achievement. None of those characteristics were present in me at college or school. I was an underachiever. I never thought I'd one day want to push myself.
I will go for a new job, next year. I will go for a job that I know is right for me. That I can love. And maybe it will be something that will give me the same kind of passion again. But maybe it has become a part of me now, that I will always strive for the extra mile, in whatever regard. Whether it be motherhood or a career. Maybe that is who I am now. To have the willingness to find the job I love. Not the job I'm merely good at.
I am 8 months pregnant. There is a new person growing inside me. I will give birth in a few weeks to a complete stranger, who has new priorities, new passions, and a new approach to life. A person I do not know anything about. A new me. Again.