When I was in school, I had no idea how trapped I was in someone else’s idea of success and happiness. My whole value system was based on whether my professors approved of me. My grades defined how good my life was. And even as I questioned the validity of the teaching methods I was asked to perform, and I struggled against the status quo, I never once thought of breaking out and finding my true self outside of school. I was eternally happy being miserable: all-nighters studying for exams, piles and piles of reading material that I was always behind on, facts and figures I impressed professors with but which never had time to sink in because I was on my way to something else—all these things made me “happy.”

I was convinced that in order to be happy, I had to be “busy” and “challenged.” I was convinced of this because I never knew anything else in my life.

Not until I was a mom did I figure out what I had been missing.

I had been missing me.

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