It’s been awhile. A supersonic fast year yet slow as freaking molasses. It hasn’t been a banner year for sure, and for so, so many reasons I couldn’t possibly encapsulate in a blog post. I am calling it a transition year (years?), but from what to what, I don’t know. I feel like I am on the pecipse of the second half of my life being different, and hard, and maybe exciting after I get myself on track. Nonetheless, I feel a little bit like a lost soul at the moment. This is scary and a wee bit depressing.
I have some major career choices ahead. I’m a consultant under contract for my old employer. I like/love the job, but damn, I hate not being an employee. Yeah, the freedom is great. But the freedom in the contract world is an illusion. I could be employed (or not) at the drop of a hat. The money isn’t “all-that”… certainly not anything to keep me but more likely for me to wander. My resume is awesome, but I lack many of the networking contacts I need to move on. Would it surprise you if I said my mentors are now mostly retired? This is decidedly not helpful. Once in a while an executive recruiter will contact me, and the job is great but not anywhere within a 100 mile radius. My LinkedIn profile is growing dusty. I work at home, and honestly that is the biggest reason I am standing still. I think I need a career counselor or a permanent job as wine-taster.
I will have a middle-school aged child in the 7th grade this fall. This gives me heart palpitations. It means we shift to speed-dating the local high schools. Let’s just think about that for a moment, shall we? Back when I was a kid, you went to school wherever your home address was on the map. Since my son is in a private school, the possibilities become endless. Some are expensive, some inexpensive, and then there is public school which still could be great. Did you know they give scholarships to private HIGH SCHOOL now? How awesome, so now you can enjoy a cheap ride though secondary school only to owe your life later to the federal government in the form of education loans. Education sometimes feels like a bait and switch.
My home, ughhhh…. it needs an overhaul. It looked great when we had it built new, but 15 years later I have the beginnings of a money pit. Recently we had an epic hot water heater failure which resulted in a flooded basement. That basement overhaul I had planned, well, it was moved up. My husband and I hauled 15 years of stuff out of the house and into the rented dumpster. It was exhausting and exhilarating all at once.
This is where the story goes off the rails. I found the 5 plastic tubs of baby clothes that have been hidden in the darkest corner of the unfinished side of the basement. Since we were cleaning out, I HAD to open them. First plastic container in, unexpectedly, I got a waft of baby smell thanks to my overuse of Dreft before I carefully folded the clothes for the NEXT BABY. Yeah, that baby. The one that never came.
Do you know how long its been since I cried ugly tears? It had been so long I couldn’t remember. But there I was alone in the basement. Sitting on a damp floor and crying my eyes out thinking of how my life would have been different if any of the 5 pregnancies had made it. I did an awful thing. I put the clothes into dark plastic bags and flipped them right into the dumpster. I didn’t give any of it away. I didn’t want anyone getting my bad mojo from those clothes. Worst of all, I didn’t want to think of any baby in the clothes I kept for MY baby.
At midnight, I went back into the dumpster and pulled out two outfits (my favorite ones) and put them in a small container for D to have when he’s grown. I figured I should at least let him have the memory I didn’t want.
So, yeah, that happened. As much as I would like to think I moved on… well…. I have not. I moved on from the reality but not the dream. It occurred to me during my mini-breakdown of sorts that this whatever it is has weighed me down so much it creeped into the parts of me that I thought I had resolved. I am still broken. This frailty had made me question the rockstar I once thought I was, because that I am not that person anymore. Pretty much the only glimmer of me I recognize is the career me. But even knowing I am good at my job has made me question if I can summon the courage to do more and refocus my life.
If I searched this blog, I bet I have said I wanted to treat myself better more times than on my fingers and toes. It’s been a persistent goal because I know I need to get right with the world before I am fit to serve others.
But I am failing. Oh, how I am failing myself yet again. The difference now is it is SO HARD to keep getting up when I am knocked down. The knees are weak, and the will is waning.