I am not afraid of storms

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One of my earliest memories is of crouching beneath my Nonna’s kitchen table with my cousin as a storm hit the house. Lightning had come in through the kitchen window and hit the stove and it was alight. My cousin was screaming. I held her hand tightly and told her it would all be ok.

When I was around 27 I went through a quarter life crisis. I didn’t quite like the path I was on and so I changed things up. Went back to study, focused for the first time in years on what I wanted to do and I got there. I achieved what I wanted, worked hard and it saw me head down a path, towards teaching, that surprised me but I enjoyed. The key things being – I kind of knew, I worked hard and I left myself open to opportunity. I made some dumb mistakes along the way. Things I wouldn’t do again. But heck they’re the best kind of mistakes.

Now, at almost 40 I feel the ground being unsteady beneath me again. I need to make some decisions about where to from here. There are two big differences now – I am a Mama and I don’t have a fixed idea of what I want next for myself. I was discussing this with my favourite girl recently and she said I should look for the recurring themes of what I have loved always. For me, it is always books and words. How this can be something I centre my work life around I am as yet unsure.

I’m reading Barracuda by Christos Tsolkias at the moment. It’s an uncomfortable read but beautiful at the same time. I can identify with much in spite of not having much in common with Dan/Danny. I can feel the need to shed skin, move beyond what has been, let go of what might have been.

I was walking with my boys the other day and my Mr 5 randomly said, “I am going to let you sleep in on Mother’s Day Mum. Mother’s Day is about thinking about what your Mum would like.” When I asked him what he knows I like he said, “You like sleeping, you love your family, butterflies, pretty China and books.” A simple response but one that shows he has thought about me and observed me.

I see (only a few) people who are clearly living their proper lives, the ones they were intended for and I feel far from there.

In some ways I trust all will be as it should one day. In more ways I know that it takes hard work to create the life I want. And in more again I wish I bloody well knew what that life looked like already.

In the meantime, I will remain open to possibility, consider much and try not to drive myself too crazy because I don’t have the answers. And I will remember I have a family I love and that I am not afraid of storms.

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One thought on “I am not afraid of storms

  1. Megan Blandford

    That feeling is so unsettling. I was there for a loooong time, as you know, unable to reconcile my new self with my old (and ever present) sense of ambition. I think the hardest thing about hitting these life crises when you’re a mum is the pressure to choose one thing (because who has the time to try more?!) and get it right quickly. We’re hard on ourselves.

    I think you are so clever and talented, and you could do anything you set your mind to. The big thing is setting your mind. I think your friend is right: look for those recurring themes, but also what does your mind imagine when your guard is down – what did you want to be as a kid? What do you imagine your life to be when you first wake in the morning and your imagination hasn’t yet learnt the day’s boundaries?

    You know what? You can get through the thunder and lightning – maybe it’s time to create a storm and ask others to hold your hand through it.

    PS – this is such beautiful writing; I read it during the night when the little one was being a terror (!) and even though it’s about being unsettled, it somehow comforted me and stayed with me until morning. I think it reminded me of my strength to get through the storms. Thank you. xxx

    Reply

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