musings | becoming whole (the conversation)

i watched the most amazing television program recently. yesterday i napped into the afternoon (gimme a break, i've been working non stop the whole summer!), and when i woke up i realized i had left the tv on. on the screen there was two women - gwyneth paltrow and another blonde. the backdrop was white and the whole thing looked so dreamy (i thought maybe i was in a dream?). the volume was on mute but i could sense that they were speaking very honestly and really connecting with each other. i was still half asleep so i recorded the time shifted program for later in the day.

today when i watched it i was just tickled. it's called "the conversation" (on lifetime) and it's hosted by the british amanda de cadenet. she converses with female celebrities in homey settings - in this instance she interviewed jane fonda, gwyneth paltrow, sarah silverman and zoe saldana. i say interviewed but that is far too formal a description for two women curled up on a couch. it was all so honest and frank and enlightening. i'm going to keep watching the episodes and touch on some of the topics here (though there were so many i can hardly choose!)

amanda and jane fonda spoke about the idea of finding yourself as a women and becoming whole throughout your life. fonda has been married three times and believes the reason for this is because in all three marriages she basing who she was on pleasing someone else. by the last marriage, she knew that something needed to change.

defining yourself by the man/partner in your life. is this an antiquated idea or do you think it still exists? when i was younger my own self respect was deeply based in what boys thought of me. it wasn't really until i began dating my husband over seven years ago that i was able to be fully myself.

don't get me wrong, i hadn't really found myself at that point and i still haven't. i've made great strides in discovering who i am, what i like and what i need out of life. i'm lucky to have found a man who is consistently supportive in all of my goals. but i'm not whole yet. fonda believes it takes us decades to reach a point in which we are "whole." a point where we have so much confidence...that it's almost like we've come full circle and we are sassy and happy eight year old girls again. i think that's going to be a long term project for me. i'm still not happy with who i am. i'm lacking skills, and certain virtues and i could stand to be a heck of a lot healthier. in the interim, i'm glad that i don't define myself by who is by my side, but rather just enjoy our partnership.

how about you? have you found yourself? do you think you'll ever reach a state of fullness? what do you make of women who base their identity fully in their marriage, husband and children?


  1. hey :) did you get my letter?

  2. i don't think there is a way to "find yourself". i think we're ever evolving and changing and there is no one set person we are to become. there will be moments when you feel fulfilled, there are moments when you'll feel empty; there will be moments when you feel confident and "whole", there are moments when you'll feel small and tiny...the point is, you never stop changing and hopefully you surround yourself with a person or people who encourage that :)

    ....we have only to "be". it's when we're in that space that we can decide on goals that are interesting to us and work toward them until they're either fulfilled or they don't interest us anymore. then you find something new to go after. "being" makes life a lot less work and a lot more fun :) don't get me wrong - i'm trying to "be" a better person all the time - but ultimately i'm only the person i can be in this moment and i'm good with that.

  3. Anonymous4.9.12

    I agree with Kristy Lynn. I think it's all about accepting who we are at that moment, where we want to go, and be content with it all. I don't want to reach a point where I no longer have anything to which I strive. I've accomplished a bit in my twenties and as I draw closer to my thirties, I had the epiphany that what gave me the most pause was my lack of goals as I'd surpassed my previous goals for my thirties. Since I realized that, I've set some goals, will try to reach them prior to my 30th birthday, and realize that for myself, I need to keep setting them. I will always struggle with myself. I will always keep striving for more. Wanting more doesn't mean I'm not whole right now though. It means I want to grow.

    In terms of defining oneself by our partner, I think it's best summed up in Shel Silverstein's "The Missing Piece" and "The Missing Piece Meets the Big O". No one is going to fill a gap for me and I'm not going to fill another's; however, I can find someone who will help me keep rolling along and I'll help them. They may grow faster than I or I may them, but we'll continue rolling together.

    I think our generation is more aware that we shouldn't base our self-worth on our partner's expectations of us, but then we have more pressure as we try to please ourselves and find someone who we do make happy simply by being with us.

    That said, I'm not sure if I'm as "whole" now as I'll view myself in a few decades. As I get older, I realize how much I've changed and know I'll say the same thing in the future. For now, I'm enjoying where I'm at and where I'm going.


thanks for your comment, i love hearing your thoughts!