This year is going to be a year of discovery. I’ve deemed that my word of the year and am declaring it as truth. Discovering what it’s like to be a mom, wife, believer, small business owner, lifelong learning, traveler, vegan, friend, daughter, sister, informal writer (some of the titles I have that are important to me, but not in an order of importance). While not one title fully defines me, rather they collectively make up who I am. However, how do I proceed with being the best at all of those (or at least somewhat good)? What does that life look like? Who am I really? What’s the balance and what am I striving to accomplish? I love the idea of a new year, new month, new beginning but this year as much as I am looking forward to everything 2019 has to offer, I’m also a bit nervous. How can I define this new life I’m living? How can I truly discover what I should be doing and who I am?

Let me back up and give you a quick overview of my adult life. I went to college, traveled, graduated with my master’s degree, got a job, traveled some more, got a new job, got married, traveled again, quit my corporate job to start my own business, traveled some more, and had a baby. The baby part being the most recent of things which happened in September 2018. So now that you’re all caught up with this condensed version of the last decade, here we are at my current situation as a full-blown adult. With the busyness of the holidays I am now trying to get into a groove and assess what this new year and new chapter of my life will look like.

For whatever reason, now that I have a kid I feel like I’m a ‘real’ grown-up. I’m obsessed with being a mom (currently standing while writing with my sweet P (Pfeiffer Mackenzie) wrapped up on my chest). I never knew if I wanted kids so I wouldn’t say that I’m shocked at this finding but rather maybe surprised. Now, how to navigate what many may have dreamed of their whole lives. I love being a mom but I don’t want to have my entire identity wrapped up in that title. How do I make sure that doesn’t happen?

My vintage business, Pat Pierce, that donates a part of every sale to charity is currently struggling, however, I don’t want to give up on it yet. I’ve always had an entrepreneurial spirit and love being a “boss babe”. Can it grow or evolve? If not, when should I give it up?

I want to grow myself spiritually. Is God calling me for something bigger than I can even imagine? Are there depths of my soul I haven’t experienced yet? What will that look like?

I have lots of questions. Lots of uncertainty. I’m not good at the unknown but I’m quickly coming to realize that I don’t have to know exactly who I am or what I’m doing in this life. If I do does that mean I’m truly continuing to grow and evolve and discover new sides of myself? Probably not. I’m also realizing we don’t have to be just one thing, we don’t have to give ourselves only one grand label, in fact, maybe we shouldn’t even try to. We’re multifaceted people and can wear multiple hats in this lifetime, hell, in one day. Each day will look different and it should (how boring would it be if every day was the same?). Some moments you’ll lean more on one title than another and other days you’ll have a balance between all of them. There will be days when I feel like a BAMF and excellent at all of these things I am and other days when I feel like I can’t adequately serve as any of these titles but that’s okay. You hear me? That’s okay (I’m speaking to myself and to you); as long as I’m pressing forward, continuing onward towards further self-discovery. I can be a mom and an independent woman and an aspiring writer and a health enthusiast and whatever grandiose or minuscule title I want. Titles I haven’t even thought of. And why try to limit them? They’re a combination of who you are and what you do and what you think and believe and understand and love and aspire to do and it’s all good. You can be everything. And in the words of the Army, “be all you can be”. And if I give up one title it doesn’t mean I’m a failure at that but rather that I have the need to discover other titles.

I’m simply (or rather not so simply) ‘Erika’. That’s my title: one who claims a lot of titles. That is my discovery and also what I am discovering. This year I’m going to take it day by day. I vow to enjoy the road of discovering and unearthing bits and pieces of myself and digging deeper into the things that make my heart sing. I encourage you to do the same. I don’t have to know everything and neither do you. Knowing everything would be counteractive to discovering, uncovering, finding. No need to focus on an end result of discovering who I really am or what I’m suppose to be doing but discovering what each moment is and means and appreciating it. Discovery is not a final destination to be reached but rather a journey of constant growth and change. Each day has something new to give, to teach, and if I can discover that each day then I think I will be living up to my word of the year and fulfilling the objective of why I chose this word to begin with. Don’t aim to discover yourself: constantly grow and evolve. If you don’t have a word for your year, maybe give discovery a try. Find a way to make your life your own. Figure out what it means to be every bit of yourself and every bit of who you can be.

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