I know we all think constantly. There is always stuff on our minds, but you know when you have those times where you just think A LOT? You know, you look at your life, your dreams, your goals, and you find yourself pondering pretty much every moment. I’ve been doing that a lot lately.
I’ve been looking at myself and trying to be as honest and objective about it as I can be. I’m trying not to let all the negative opinions about myself interfere with what is truly there. Life is an interesting ride. We are only young for so long, and then we go out into the world wide eyed and hopeful, or timid and reluctant. I think I was reluctant to greet the world as a “grown up.” I really had no idea how to be one. I realize now that no one does. It’s all a big learning game. Our experiences and how we react to them makes us who we are. One moment builds on another in this giant staircase, and while some people seem to know where they are going and never veer from the path, others of us dodge obstacles that change our path, turning it into something different than we thought it was when we first started out.
I sit here thinking about how every decision I ever made led me to where I am right now. It’s really quite an awe inspiring thought, when you think about it. Any choice we had made differently could have set us on a different course. I look at my life and I’m not where I thought I’d be, but the thing is, I’m not sure I ever had a clear picture of just where it was I would be. I don’t think I ever really had a heading.
When I write, I am what is known as a “pantser.” I don’t outline. At least not in detail. I just start writing. I go with the flow, and see where it takes me. I don’t have everything before me in nice, neat boxes before I begin. I think I live life much the same way. I’m not saying that’s good or bad, it just is.
When I was young and starry eyed, I married and thought that would be me forever. A married woman. I’d keep house, keep kids, and be the best wife and mom I could be. But it didn’t last forever. Not the marriage part, anyway. When that ended, I was adrift again. Happily adrift, but I was in foreign waters, not sure what I was supposed to do. I didn’t know who I was or what I wanted. I was a mom, which was the best thing ever, but who was I? What did I need? I’d never asked myself that question before. I’d never taken care of myself, I’d never learned who the adult me was.
I knew I never wanted to be stagnant. I knew I wanted to learn new things, pick up long forgotten interests, and finally give myself permission to be happy. I wanted to do more than just drift through my life doing what I thought everyone else wanted of me. I couldn’t do that anymore.
I was told it wasn’t my smartest move in getting divorced. I, after all, had no real skills to enter the work force and care for myself and my child. I couldn’t let that stop me. Things would be difficult, but I would find a way. And I did. Sometimes life is different than what we expected, and sometimes we have to do something because it’s the only option that makes sense to us. I couldn’t live the way I was living anymore. Things had to change. It was tough, but we managed. We still do.
As I sit here and think about my life, and where I am now, I can only be amazed. I am so very blessed. I have a great family and I have a few great friends. I have the best daughter in the world. She amazes me every single day, and I don’t know what I would do without her. She is, by far, the most precious thing I have ever been entrusted with. And do you know what else? I’m a writer! I am exactly what I wanted to be when I was little (okay, except for the brief stint where I thought it would be great to be a gift wrapper. You know, like in the department stores when you used to could take your purchase to gift wrapping and they would wrap it for you? Yeah…I had lofty dreams of one day being a gift wrapper…sounded pretty awesome at the time.) But ever since I can remember I wrote stories. I lived them. I breathed them. I read them. I fancied myself a writer one day – but I thought that was just a pie-in-the-sky fantasy. But it wasn’t. I’m there. How great is that? Okay, I’m not on any bestseller lists, and I certainly can’t support myself on royalty checks, but that isn’t the point. The point is, I AM A WRITER. I’m living my dreams.
That’s pretty exciting stuff. I have a home filled with chaos, laughter, and the love of a child that means everything to me. I get to read pretty much whenever I want. I get to write. I have the fantastic fortune to be able to write books, articles, blogs, AND have the occasional copywriting assignment thrown in. What could be better than that?
Nope, I’m not making millions. Yep, we still struggle sometimes. Who doesn’t? Life is about perspective and choosing happiness. It’s about living with joy and passion. It’s about fighting for your beliefs and chasing dreams. It’s about always having dreams, and not forgetting to look around you. Live in awe of this amazing universe we call home. Gaze at the stars. Listen to the wind. Always strive to be the best version of yourself. Be kind. Be grateful.
Life isn’t what I thought it would be. I’ve strayed from my path, and found new ones time and time again. I’ve spent the past locking myself away and ignoring my own needs. I’m finally living life on my own terms (most of the time). I’m finally looking around me with wonder and excitement.
But tonight when I close my eyes I can be grateful. I have two things that I know I can’t lose. I have my daughter, which is most important of all, and I have my creativity. I am a writer. There. I said it. Just like I dreamed of when I was a young girl. See? Dreams do come true.