Posted by: Kate | March 4, 2010

Finding Identity

I’m coming up quickly on my 37th birthday, with a son who is about to turn 10. I don’t feel just shy of 40, I still feel 20 inside. I feel like some days I’m still struggling to identify myself – so much of an adult’s identity is wrapped up in what they do for a living and frankly, most days I’m not sure what my job title is. In the past two weeks I’ve been a project manager for a large corporate newsletter, a teacher (so much fun, thanks for all the kind words, looks like I’ll be doing some more next term), a school parent, a stay at home mom, a writer, a marketing and website advisor/writer. That doesn’t include all the little things, like dog walker, on-call computer guru for my mother, dish washer, cook and laundry doer. I love what I do (OK, not so much the dish washer part), but some days I’m just not sure how all those parts add up to a whole.

I had a mentor once tell me I was the type who would have five or six careers in my lifetime. I didn’t think she meant all at once though!

Funny thing, this self-identity. I don’t think that who I think I am is how others see me. But which is the real me?



  1. regardless of how many jobs you have, i see you as an inspiration – a strong, confident, crafty, amazing woman.
    i say you grab 37 and embrace it. you are wonderful!

  2. I here you Kate I here you! I feel very much the same most days… who am I?

    Either way I think you are great! Embrace your multi talented self and be happy that you will will always have a fallback career or two ;-)

  3. Years ago I was told by someone (obviously a wise person) that “who you are” is not defined by “what you do.”

    I have always tried to remember that when I am having similar thoughts of doubt on my own self-identity.

  4. Ah 37, I remember it well. Actually I do not remember it at all. I had recently birthed #4 and all was a daze.

    Isn’t it great that you are flexible enough, and smart enough, and skilled enough to do so many things at a time?

    Count your blessings.

  5. Ah, so we both embrace 37 this year. I can’t grasp that number either…some days I do feel like I’m approaching 40 but most days I can’t understand what happened to the years after 25.

    Identity is a tricky concept isn’t it? You know yourself better than anybody else…and I think often the reason others see us differently than we see ourselves is because we choose to share different layers of who we are with different people. Some may see only a few layers, while others get to see those that we only share with a select few. And I agree completely with Nadine…what you do does not/should not define you. Last thought…it seems we are forever evolving, forever changing. Perhaps the question of who we are was never really meant to be answered until your life is complete.

Welcome! I always like to hear what people think of a post, it often leads to a great discussion! I am now responding to comments and questions right in the comments themselves, so other people can follow the conversation.

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