Welcome back to another I Am More article! Today I’m super excited to be sharing Meghan Owens Gosselin’s story! Meghan was nominated to be featured by her sister Robyn not only for being an amazing older sister, but also for her impactful career in education. We had such an amazing conversation, one of my longest interviews thus far, so I hope you all enjoy learning more about Meghan, just as much as I enjoyed talking with her!
Meghan Owens Gosselin is from Elizabeth, New Jersey. She attended Rutgers University where she obtained her degree in English, with a minor in Sociology. She then went to Rutgers Newark where she got her MFA in writing. With those degrees she got her teaching certification and currently teaches 8th grade English, as well as freshman English as an adjunct professor on the college level.
One of the questions I ask all the women I speak with is “What would you consider your greatest achievement and why?” This led Meghan to express to me that when she was younger she promised herself that by 30 years old she would either have a published work of writing or have a child. Meghan is 30 now and neither of those have happened for her. She went on to say that while those goals have not been met she is not upset about it because most times life doesn't go as planned and it is ok to roll with the punches as opposed to fighting against the grain. I knew in the moment as we were speaking that I had to highlight this part of our conversation. For so many of us, myself included, we have a set plan for how we’d like our lives to be, what we’d like to achieve and when we’d like to achieve it. However, there are always things that pop up and deter us from those plans and that is ok. I’m not sure when society set these predisposed rules that certain things had to be done by certain ages, or within a certain time frame but truth be told, we’re all on separate paths with various different pumps in the road. Let Meghan be an example of accepting the fact that life doesn’t always go as planned and even when it doesn’t goals can still be achieved outside of their original due dates.
One of the things that helped Megahn come to this realization that life was still worth appreciating, even when things weren’t going according to plans, was overcoming her people-pleasing tendencies and her own self doubt. Meghan went on to explain how she struggled to ask for things due to fear of rocking the boat, or simply believing she did not deserve it. Self doubt is a real phenomenon that many people struggle with day to day and it’s extremely hard to conquer because it entails everyday battle with yourself. Defeating self doubt is one of the reasons I started I Am Woman. For generations upon generations women were told that they were not allowed to do many things including voicing their opinions and asking for things they deserve, so in many ways it is innate for women to feel uncomfortable to do those things. Through I Am Woman, I am hoping to remind each and everyone of you to believe in yourself! Take stories like Meghan's as a reminder that your thoughts and opinions are worthy and valuable to others! As for my people pleasers out there, it is high time you started looking out for you. You can not make everyone else happy if you are not happy yourself. Recognition is the first step, from there you have to decide that you are worth more than just living for other people, start living for yourself.
Meghan explained how by overcoming these obstacles not only did it have a positive impact on her personal life, but helped her move throughout her professional life as well. She explained how once she began to work on standing up for what she wanted and not worrying so much about other people, she began to make decisions that put her in better positions career wise. She gained the security to know she deserved better, gathered the confidence to seek better, and used courage to leave her comfort zone. Don’t hold yourself back from anything whether that be in your personal life or your professional life, know what you are worth!
As I mentioned in the beginning of the article Meghan was nominated by her youngest sister Robyn, Meghan also has two other younger siblings Kaitlyn and Collin. The four of them have become very close over the years. Knowing this knowledge ahead of time, I was very interested in how Meghan as the oldest helped to foster the loving environment but how she has navigated the ins and outs of sibling relationships. Meghan explained how it wasn’t always easy not just in the subconscious pressures of being a good role model but the innate desire to protect them from any and everything. If she had any advice to offer not just to eldest sisters, but to all eldest siblings it would be to be a safe haven for your siblings. It will always be natural to offer advice, shield them from hurt, and judge their questionable decisions, but Meghan has learned that many times all someone really needs is a safe space and a listening ear. For many being an eldest child comes with unwanted responsibilities and crazy younger siblings but Meghan considered it one of her greatest joys within her life.
For those who don’t know Meghan just recently got married at the end of October, in light of this event I asked to share some of her excitement and anxieties she may have had that came with the territory of being married. This question led us into a conversation on name changing. Meghan explained how she had a difficult time deciding what to do with her name. As most of us know it is tradition that after a couple get married, the woman is to change her last name from her fathers to her now husbands. Recently over the past few decades many women have decided to keep their last name, or hyphenate it to have both names. Meghan explained that deciding what to do with her name was difficult because for her whole life she has been known as Meghan Owens, it is a part of her identity that she worked hard to create. However, at the same time taking on her husband's last name is a symbolization of becoming one. With that being said Meghan has decided to keep both names, Owens has her middle name and Gosselin as her last but I wanted to be sure to include this inner conflict she experienced because I’m sure it is a point of concern for all brides and newly wedded women. Meghan said it best, when she states, “It’s a small thing, but I guess it speaks to a larger concern, which is this fear of losing autonomy. I think as a woman it is very easy to become a mother, become a wife, become a grandmother, become a role instead of a person. Which is something I don’t want because I value my personhood. I value being a person with ideas, dreams and passions. I don’t fear that I’m in jeopardy of losing that, but I fear that is how I will be perceived.”
To start wrapping things up, Meghan is grateful for her biggest supporters whom she announced to be her siblings Kaitlyn, Robyn, and Collin, as well as her mother! In 10 years she hopes to own a home, be raising some kids and publishing if not her first but one of her many possible books.
Finally, Meghan attributes her great female inspiration to Margaret Atwood who has published many works that have helped Meghan through rough times in her life. Not to mention she admired Margarets abilities to write such wondrous works. Fun fact, Meghan hopes to own every single piece she has ever published.
With that being said I’d like to thank you all for reading. Thank you to Robyn for nominating Meghan, please remember that you too can nominate an important woman in your life to be featured here on I Am Woman! If you don’t already please be sure to follow me on Instagram and TikTok @iam.wwoman. I am currently in the middle of holding a Christman giveaway on instagram and as long as you are subscribed here and follow me on Instagram you are eligible to win, just follow the directions!
Please send all nomination to my email firstname.lastname@example.org