You are all parts of you

November 15, 2013 LifeThoughts  One comment

None of us really changes over time. We become more fully what we are.
Anne Rice

I have often felt that my life has been fragmented. As in, it does not add up to one cohesive whole.

My parents divorced when I was five and I spent the next fifteen years moving between houses: 13 in total (that’s not including several of my parents houses that I did not actually live in – but it is including my several moves since graduating high school).

Along the way there have been several different step-parents, more than a handful of step-siblings, and extended step-family. So on top of the normal changes in a child’s life and the evolving nature of families, there has been a whole lot of disconnect and constant change.

It wasn’t all bad. There were times of great happiness, times of deep sadness, times of chaos and fear, times of grace, times of stability.

But the problem with always moving forward is that you find it hard to stand still.

And not only that, but the different periods in my life changed so fast and jarringly that one does not flow into the other naturally. They don’t add up in my mind. And because of that I feel like I have lived lots of different lives. Like I have been lots of different people.

I have been carefree and innocent/broken and silent/angry in the worst possible way/happy.

I have lived in Eastpointe (small, working class town right outside of Detroit to give you some reference). I have lived in Warren. I have lived in the country. I have been a part of a large, loud, obnoxious Italian Catholic family. I have grown up with a house full of boys. And I have also grown up with two younger brothers, and two younger sisters. I have been a steadfast and devoted Christian teenager. I have been a disillusioned college student. I have attended Michigan State University. I have lived in Manhattan and attended a small private liberal arts college.

I find it hard to not look back at where I have been and think, “What if I had stayed there? Who would I be today? What would my life look like now?”

I also find it incredibly heartbreaking that I am on the fringes of the lives of all the people who have been there along the way. I’ve attended three different elementary schools, two high schools, and three colleges. I have friends from each stage of my life that I can no longer keep up with. And it breaks my heart that they are moving on without me. That I can see what’s happening in their lives, but am no longer a part of it. Of course, it’s not possible to keep up with everyone when everyone is going their own way, busy doing their thing, but that only makes it a little less sad.

And now, I’m married and own a house in a city that previously only existed in movies to me. I have my degree in Psychology. I’m the most stable I have ever been. But when I look back on those places I have lived and all those different people I have been it is hard for me to reconcile them all together. How can I possibly house all those different people inside of me? A now happy, stable, relatively peaceful person?

I touch on this sentiment in my upcoming novel:


All these different memories from what felt like separate lives flooded my mind, my heart. Memories were like pieces of a puzzle, but how did you put the pieces together when they were all from different puzzles? When they didn’t add up to a coherent, whole picture?










And what I’ve concluded is this:

You are all parts of you.

I’m not naive enough to think I’m the only person to have felt this way, ever. So I know that in some way, you probably feel that way too. Even if your journey wasn’t as unorthodox as mine.

You are the parts of you that are broken, yet strong. You are the parts of you that are angry, yet peaceful. You are the parts of you that are stable, yet want nothing more than to run away.

All these contradicting things coexist inside of you. It’s true.

I have been an indie rock’n’roller. I have been a literary nerd. I have been a country girl. I have been a city slicker. I have been a younger sister, and also the oldest sibling. I have been hurt, and I’ve also done some hurting.

I am that person who has been all of those different people. And being all those different people have led me to who I am today. And I feel that the longer my feet are planted and the more I understand myself, the more healing that has taken place to fuse all those fragmented pieces together.

Know this: as humans, we’re incredibly complex and inherently contradictory. You can be two contradictory things (ie: strong, yet weak) but usually one will be more dominant than the other at any given time.

Also, you take on many different roles throughout your life. Some of them stay the same, others change. That’s part of growing and evolving as an individual.

Change is inevitable. You are not meant to remain stagnant and unchanged as you go throughout life. You are supposed to grow, and as you journey throughout the different stages of your life, you are becoming more and more who you are. All those different fragments they do add up to a whole.


Stay tuned next week for a post on What marriage has taught me about relationships and love (so far) – Part I


Until next time, farewell, & may your life never cease to be filled with wonder and curiosity.


Photo creds: Rebeca Cygnus

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One comment to You are all parts of you

  • […] that doesn’t even begin to include all the moving I’ve done as a child—more on that here). And yes, I could explain to you all the reasons why moving to Charleston is a good idea. But I […]

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