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I Am That Woman And That Girl Remains Within

I’ve long wondered when I would make the transformation

The evolution?

The reincarnation?

The metamorphosis?

From unsure

Timid

Curious

Sensitive

Competitive

Naive

Into assertive

Empowered

Ambitious

Self-assured.

Would there be a day, a moment, an event, a catalyst

When would I feel less like a girl and more like a woman?

I’ve known love -- all kinds.

In me, love has built upon love and multiplied.

It’s made room when I thought there was no space for more to fit.

I’ve known lust and all its dangerous thrills.

I’ve been lucky enough to live in the thorny tangled mess of love intertwined with lust.

I was able to keep my head above the surface of it.

I managed not to drown.

That was how I became a wife.

I created life.

I broke myself,

My heart,

My soul,

The pieces that came apart, I fused with 2 boys whose worth is immeasurable.

I’ve ached.

I’ve conquered fear.

I’ve failed time and time again.

As a wife I’ve grown and fallen in love in new ways with the one who makes me feel safe no matter what.

I’ve found ambition in craving a new horizon to discover.

I’ve met determination by burning through defeat.

Childbirth introduced me to empowerment.

Motherhood steeled my nerves, softened my heart, but hardened my resolve.

But, much has not changed.

I still prefer to be gracious, to be kind.

Am I unsophisticated?

I’m still curious

And I’m sensitive.

I still feel the drive to compete and the rush of triumph.

I’m still me.

There’s been no change.

Though, perhaps there’s been a shift.

From me

Into more me.

Less apologetically me:

The girl who laughs too loudly.

The wife who gives too much.

The mother who loves too fiercely.

The woman who knows her worth.

Innocent and guilty

Naive and enlightened

Hard and soft

Strong and pliable

I am a daughter, a sister, a friend.

I’m simply like you.

I’m dreadfully unique.

I’m me.