Identity 911

When I got married, I went from being called Kari Kubiszyn to being called Kari Kampakis. Transitioning from one odd name to another was easy. Figuring out who this new person was, however, launched an identity crisis that I didn’t expect.

I was thrilled to finally live in the same city as Harry, but moving to Huntsville from Birmingham meant leaving my friends, my family, and a job I adored. In Birmingham everything clicked for me, but in Huntsville I couldn’t catch a groove, much less find work. Everyone I knew was working, and being home alone, with no one to talk to except the postal carrier, allowed me too much time to think.

Who was I with my slate wiped clean? Why did I feel so small and insignificant with nothing special to say about myself except that I’d just gotten married?weddingt004 copy

For 26 years I’d been known for something – good grades, credentials, a promising career – but with all those things in my past, they were no longer relevant. My new identity, Kari Kampakis, had no interesting tagline, nothing to make me stand out from a million other folks in this world.

It was then that I realized a painful truth: My self-esteem was tied to my achievements. And when I wasn’t achieving, my self-esteem suffered.

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It’s A Wonderful Life

She was never a part of my plan. And for that reason alone, I couldn’t wrap my head around her.

I took the pregnancy test for peace of mind. I knew I wasn’t pregnant…yet I had to make sure. A missed cycle had stirred doubt in my head. That doubt bothered me. I wanted it to go away so I could get on with life.camille-BLOG

When the pregnancy test turned positive, my heart sank. A tsunami of emotions swelled inside me, and while I couldn’t pinpoint every feeling, I could tell that the predominant one was disbelief.

No. This isn’t happening. This can’t be happening. I don’t want a baby. We’re fine as we are. Go away…

In my head I counseled myself with a few basic facts: You have three children already. You adore them and your husband. You’ve been down this road before. You have a happy home. Why are you so freaked out?

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