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Then vs. Now

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I’m female and a planner.  Before the concept of Pinterest, I was always saving ideas for the future.  Scraps of paper and newspaper clippings.  Pages torn from magazines and recipes cut out of the back of boxes.  In high school and college, I had a whole shoe box full, and when my nail polisher remover leaked on afternoon, that was the end of my tidbits for the days ahead.  But before that tragedy occurred, I had gathered ideas of where I saw my life to be heading.
Just like many other girls, I had planned out my dream wedding, my dream house and had picked out the perfect names for my future children.  At that time, I saw 30 to be old, but figured that I’d have my act together.  I was sure to have a husband, a beautiful house that we purchased together and that was always nicely decorated for the major holidays, just like my mom has done for years.  If I didn’t already have kids, it would be something that me and my hubby would be working on and soon the cries of young babes would echo from the walls of our home.  I would teach elementary school until the time that my husband and I would have our first child and then we would move to a household supported through his financial earnings, while I stayed at home to raise the children.  Eventually I would return to the workforce, once the kids were all off to school and life would continue in harmonious bliss.

It’s blatantly obvious that my head was in the clouds and these grand ideas were better off for the makings of a made for TV movie.  After a number of failed relationships in my twenties, including a broken engagement, I still had hopes that by the time I reached my third decade of existence, that I would have a least a steady relationship that would be heading towards a happy life and marriage.  Somehow even though my heart was broken and put back together numerous times, that bubble of a blissful relationship and home didn’t burst.  Maybe it was because I’ve so extremely blessed to have grown up in that type of home and witness that to that type of marriage.

My parents met at the age of fourteen and sixteen, just down the street from where they live now.  They have been together pretty much everyday since.  This year, I had the great honor of helping them celebrate their 40th wedding anniversary. So there’s really no wonder why my siblings and I have grown up believing that we would find that kind of love right out of high school as well.

Well I’m every bit of 30 years old now and though it was something that I had a hard time accepting back in January, I have come to appreciate the fact that I have not reached many of the milestones that I was certain I would have met when I collected a shoe box of scraps.  I don’t have a husband, or even a potential for a Friday night date, except for Netflix and a bowl of popcorn.  I haven’t purchased a home, because instead I rent my two-bedroom townhouse where I occasionally remember to decorate for the holidays.  The only cries of young babes that echo from the walls of my home is from the adjoining townhouse next door when his dad comes home from work or he falls running up and down the steps.  And though I substitute taught for two years in two different school districts, I have come to realize that that is not my passion in life, even though I love working with children.  I don’t have an opportunity to be a stay-at-home anything right now because I have bills to pay and I may be picking up a part-time job on top of my already full-time schedule to help make ends meet, but where I hope to get that job will give me discounts on clothes and shoes! (BONUS!)

Life is different than what I expected it to be.  It’s not the made for TV movie; it’s not even a sitcom of a working class wife/mom.  The closest thing it relates to is…well nothing, except for the book, The Single Woman.  But it’s my life; full of running around from one activity to the next. It’s a home full of all of MY clothes and MY things that I can leave on the floor if I want to.  It’s a quiet environment where I can stay up late and sleep in should I give myself the option to.  I can sleep in my recliner, if I fall asleep to Netflix and don’t have to worry about someone calling me upstairs to bed.

It’s reality.  And today, I’m okay with it!

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