Often I run in silence. I let the miles slip by as I take in the houses, businesses, and landscape around me. I let my thoughts go wherever they may. It’s truly the most precious “me time” I have found as a mom. Last week, as I plugged away miles on a route I’ve run countless times before, I had a realization that took me aback. I had an “aha, woah, how can this be” moment in the most simple of places, at the most simple of times over the most mundane of topics. I was suddenly struck with the thought that I have been a stay-at-home mom for over five years. For 61 months. For 266 weeks. For 1,865 days. I have been a mom. When I signed up to be a stay-at-home mom, I imagined that this role would totally consume my identity for some time, and I was okay with that fact. I was okay with being a mom to Trace (and eventually Henry) and embraced all that entailed. But after five years, I have learned that in totally embracing life as a mom, I have surprisingly found way more of my own life as well. In losing myself to this role, I have found so many other aspects of myself that I hardly knew existed.