Me, only different
Being a parent does weird things to your self-image.
Adele Hamilton, Editor Parent24 (Shawn Benjamin)
"So whose mother are you again?" asks the high school principal.

I haven’t seen too much of him, which is probably a good sign that my son in Grade 10 hasn’t broken any serious school rules. We exchange ideas about the school website, and I leave the office, quite confident that he has already forgotten me in the endless parade of parents that find their way to his door. He may remember I am Miles’s mother, though.

I’m used to my identity being fixed by whose parent I am. In fact in the primary school playground I am often greeted with: "Hello, Joelsmommy."

For nearly 16 years I have been mainly that – someone’s mom. What did I do before I had children? I am pretty sure I didn’t spend my evenings folding washing. I am still my own person, but woven into my own colours are those of my children, indivisible from the pattern of my own life.

As my children get older I begin to feel my own colours getting brighter again. I begin to know myself again: yes, I like walking, no, I’m not much of a one for early mornings.

We’ve gathered a handful of stories that explore our feelings about being parents:

The school beast – Sometimes we don't feel we fit in.
Of guilt and asparagus – How the Guilt Gland can cause self-doubt.
'Dad, the Stormers won' – Sport as a language between father and son.
Corruption is rife...– When we do what we swore we never would. 

Are there bits of yourself that seem to have gone missing since you became a parent? Shine a light on them here.

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