Ten years ago, on my 30th birthday, I thought I had it all figured out...
I was getting established in a new town and a new career I'd planned on for years, I was starting to build a community of friends through the theatre, and I was getting ready to embark on the journey that is parenthood.
I would have two kids, approximately three years apart (hopefully at least one girl, since I never totally understood boys), I would continue writing and eventually publish the workbooks I'd been using in my school based counseling groups, and I when the dust settled with the kids, I'd start volunteering to direct musicals with my husband as musical director so that the whole family could be involved.
A few short years later I found myself a sleep deprived single parent to a very colicky infant, changed to a job with less kid contact and more paperwork to be closer to home, and the theatre communities I had been a part of had ended for unfair reasons.
Now that I'm turning 40, my life looks nothing like I had imagined 10 years ago, but in many ways it's so much better!
Raising an intense child has connected me with my own intensity and desire to help others embrace it in themselves rather than suppressing it or letting it get out of control. His issues as an infant got me looking into my own diet and how it might affect him. While I never found a connection with him, it laid the groundwork for completely changing my own way of eating.
While my new job did not allow for much creative exploration with counseling and intervention, it did give me more free time in my days outside of work to explore what I wanted to do for me. I started a food blog, which led to looking into health coaching, which eventually led to life coach training.
Though I most definitely miss my theatre friends, single parenting doesn't lend itself well to participating in full length plays, so I was already becoming more distant by default. Losing the community I loved forced me to look elsewhere for connection and eventually brought me back to my Unitarian Universalist roots. There, I've made the deepest of connections with people I can't imagine my life without.
I once pondered to a close friend that I wondered if I was being too picky in looking for a partner, but then I said, "I just want a partner who makes me feel at least as good as I do when I'm with my friends."
To this she replied, "I'm sorry we set the bar so high."
She was completely right, and I finally met someone who measured up!
I expected to have a big shin dig on my 40th birthday, but between getting married two month's before and hopefully closing on potentially life changing move next (more on that next month), a small get together is all I need.
Ten years later, and arguably wiser, and I can honestly say I have no idea what the next ten years will bring. One thing I can safely say is it will be an adventure!