As a young girl growing up in American society, the dream that we've all been taught is to grow up, find a husband, get married, have kids, and live out your happy days surrounded by your grandchildren and loved ones. For some people, this still is the dream. There's absolutely nothing wrong with getting married and having kids; it is still part of my life's dream. However, as I've grown up and started forming my own opinions about the world, I've rewritten those dreams. I want to get married someday, but I don't just want to be a wife.
Still to this day one of the discussions with the most surprising variation on opinion is which role in your life comes first. The most popular ones that I have heard are usually husband/wife/significant other or parent. While these can certainly be important roles and there's no problem with valuing them, I take a great problem in anyone but myself choosing in what order I value the roles in my life. Before anything else in my life, I am my own person and no one can take that away from me.
In the aforementioned dream that most girls are taught, the wife is to be nothing more than a stay-at-home genie catering to everyone else's needs except her own. She has to be the best mom to 2.5 children, the best wife to her breadwinning husband, the best homemaker for all of them, and at the end of the day have a smile on her face. Stay-at-home moms don't get even close to the credit they deserve for all that they do while maintaining their sanity at the end of the day. Again, there's nothing wrong with this. If this is what you want for your life, more power to you. Even if I someday end up becoming a stay-at-home mom, I want to make one thing clear: I am a person before all else.
In order to be all of these things and fulfill all of these roles for other people, it's so important to keep your individuality. It's so easy to get lost in all the hustle and bustle of everyday life and it's even easier to lose yourself in all of that. It's important to make time for yourself to do the things that make you happy and make you who you are. If that's spending time with your kids at the park, so be it. If it's reading a book, make some time for it.
The thing that I want more than anything is to have the freedom to make my own decisions, have my own career and dreams, and still be able to be in a happy, healthy relationship with my future family. This is an incredibly attainable dream with the right, supportive person. Don't settle for anything less than what you deserve. Don't settle for anything less than the life that you dream of.
I know I won't.