I contemplated whether to write this blog or not. Originally, I didn’t see a need to share my story becuase this isn’t the first time I have taken a sabbatical. However, with each sabbatical I always learn something new about myself and I believe that should always be shared.
When I wrote and released those first few blogs over six years ago, it brought me so much joy and happiness knowing I was helping other women. I opened it with the pure intention of using my personal life stories of struggle or pleasure to inspire women everywhere to want better for themselves. You do better when you know better, which ultimately makes you better. But you can’t change what you don’t even know, right? Stories on marriage, motherhood, healthy living, and wellness all encompassed in one place for the reader (YOU) to relate to and see that you can start living your best life regardless of the obstacles. Luwame came to life as a way to reach out to other women, especially mothers, and let them know that they are never alone because I didn’t have that when I was a new mother. I didn’t have an outlet, a place where I could find other women who understood the struggles I was going through, and it was lonely.
Let’s fast forward sixteen years! I, Luwam A. Tesfaye, am a mom of four! Even saying it today, almost two years after my youngest, Lucas, was born, shocks me. Four little people came from my womb into this world, and boy, oh boy, was I not ready for how the change in our family dynamic would impact me. I wrote a blog a while ago on how our lives changed and how different my picture of motherhood was from reality.
I don’t remember when blogging began to feel more like a chore then something purposeful for me and others. I don’t remember when exactly the imposter syndrome began or when I started to feel as though everything had to be perfect in order to hit publish, but all that caused me to stop in my tracks. It created the fear of failure, and once that was embedded in my mind, it became all I could see. Have you ever felt like you failed in something because the measurement of success you envisioned did not come to life? That’s how I feel: like I failed because Luwame did not reach the metric I placed. Now I feel like I’m hiding away in the excuse of my motherhood duties because motherhood is what I do best! It’s where metrics do not exist and are instead replaced with love- unconditional love. I know my children; I can feel their needs and instantly know how to help them. It’s second nature, and I find comfort in that. There is no need to prove myself in motherhood like there is with Luwame. So, I guess that’s when I stopped writing. Somehow in someway, the urge to prove myself became more important than the purpose.
In my sabbatical, I focused a great deal on why I am the way I am. What happened to me that could affect my way of thinking to this extent? Much of it stems from my upbringing and my need for perfection so I could be seen by my parents, grandmother, aunts, cousins, and even friends. This need for perfection caused expectations on how my loved ones should love me in return, and those expectations followed me into adulthood, affecting my marriage and the way I parented. Understanding all of this did not bring me peace, but it did lead me to the one place where peace was guaranteed: GOD. By knowing where my pain stemmed from and how it has affected me, I was able to see past it. It’s hard for me to explain, but the instant I realized that my way of thinking had nothing to do with me and everything to do with how I was conditioned to think, I was able to change how I saw myself and the expectations I created utterly. The best part was that I finally felt free; again, I can’t explain the freedom in words; it’s just a feeling I feel inside me, and I know that this freedom could have only come from GOD. This is where my peace lies. True everlasting peace is a gift from our creator, and without Him in my life, I would have never felt the urge to understand how I kept trying new things and felt like a failure at them all; instead, I would have forever continued to chase perfection.
I have to be completely honest with you. I am still determining what Luwame will look like going forward regarding blogging or podcasting. A part of me feels like that season has passed. I will continue, however, to always provide programs that help women create and start becoming the dream version of themselves because that is where I am called to be. God intended that purpose for me, and all the struggles and lessons have led me here.
Now, let’s talk about the fun stuff! Apart from all that I have listed above, the past six months have been unbelievably eye-opening and amazing. I traveled a great deal and got to experience different cultures. I spent quality time with my loved ones and never felt the need to post or talk about it. I started taking Pilates classes and learned how to connect more with my body.
In draining out the noise that came with my need for perfection, I was able to do more of what made me happy, and it served me well. Somewhere in month 3 or 4, my mindset shifted (funny, I write that because I offer a course called SHIFT that does that exact same thing), and every moment became a blessing instead of a complaint. Don’t get me wrong, I still find things that I wish were different, and I will occasionally complain about them. Still, the difference is that I see my complaint as a simple complaint instead of something I have to dwell on and worry about and let it fester in me, causing all kinds of fear and anxiety to creep into my mind. I see everything for what it is- A temporary issue that will pass because it will indeed pass; the only thing that is forever is GOD, and that, my dear reader, is a FACT.
Sending you much love and blessings in whatever season of life you are in.