Saturday, November 3, 2007

Livin' the Life

I think most of you who read my blog are much younger than I. But I wonder, at this stage in your life, are you where you thought you'd be? What did you dream about doing or being when you grew up? When you graduated high school, did you think you would be living where you are, and doing what you are doing?

I've been reflecting lately on what I thought my life would be, and what it actually turned out to be. When I was very young, I wanted to be a teacher. I remember playing school all the time. I absolutely loved creating assignments for my pretend students. Even as I was in high school, I really thought I wanted to teach. I was in the Future Teachers of American club at school and everything. Problem was, no one in my family ever attended college and I wasn't encouraged to go. Now, I'm not blaming my parents AT ALL. They had all they could handle raising five kids on a low income. They would have been thrilled if I had gone on to college. But, they had no clue how to help me do that, and unfortunately, my high school counselor did not excel in that area either. So, I never even took any of the college entrance exams. Along came SR and it didn't really seem to matter anymore.

While I was wishing to be a teacher, I was also wishing to be a mother and homemaker. I wanted desperately to grow up, get married, and have kids. I wanted to devote myself to my kids and live the life I remember my mom living when I was a small child. She was a stay-at-home mom, and she had close neighbors who were all great friends. It was almost like a t.v. show in my mind. One where kids were around to play with, and adults who enjoyed sharing their lives and a cup of coffee. When my Dad retired from the Marines, we moved back to my parents' home town and lived out in the "boonies" where there were no neighbors, and my Mom was forced to go to work. She made it possible for me to be involved in EVERYTHING I wanted.

So, now after turning 49 in September, and being married for 30 years, I take stock and see where I am. I was able to have my precious children and I was able to stay at home with them while they were small. They were and are a blessing to me. I was never awakened in the night by a phone call that they were in trouble and needed bailing out. They were never involved in drugs, and I've never really had to worry about their behavior. I wasn't able to be formally educated to teach, but I believe I was a good teacher to them while we were at home. Like my mother, I had to go to work when they were a little older but I haven't been trapped in any job that made me terribly unhappy. My husband has been as supportive as any husband could possibly be and plans for a time when we can both retire and enjoy being together doing nothing or anything we feel like.

So, if I was asked, "Are you living the life you thought you would live, when you were younger?" I would have to say I pretty much am. And for that, I am very grateful. Are things perfect? No, of course not. But I have to focus on what is good, and let go of what cannot be changed. I never thought I would be living in a different town than where I raised my children, so that's a nice surprise. I never thought I'd be a medical secretary, but it's not a bad job most days. I never thought my son would be living two hours away, but that's ok. We can live with it. At least it's not 2 states away or something that harsh. As in everything in life, there are things I would change if I could, but the truth is, my life is pretty darn good. It could be soooo much worse.

God has truly blessed me. I just hope I can remember that more and thank Him for it more than I do. What do I wish for the future? I would like to be able to stay home, study God's word, read, paint, do more church work and play with any grandchildren I might have. Oh, and let's not forget my dream of going to Scotland one day. I just hope if it ever happens, I'm not too old to enjoy it. ;)


LeLe said...

I thought I'd have at least two kids by now and have gone with you to Scotland. I guess I still have time, but it seems like time on this earth is so precious that I'm afraid it's going to pass me by and I'll be 70 and realize that I didn't get to do all those things I had set out to do. I really didn't think I'd be living with my in-laws at 28 years old. But, such is my life and at least I have a roof over my head and hot water, which is more than I can say for people in Africa and South America.

Alice said...

I wouldn't say I am exactly where I thought I would be but I am very happy with where I am. I always dreamed of being a stay-at-home mom of several kids. I also dreamed of graduating from college and I did that (the first in my family) I would not have thought that we would be soooooo far from our family and friends that we grew up with but we are and God had taken care of us by giving us great friends here. I enjoy having a family of my own but seriously MISS our extended families.

I always say that I could be happy living ANYWHERE with Brian (even in a tent, if I had too).

Sooz said...

I thought I would be teaching somewhere at this point in my life. I earned that degree a few years ago and all of the sudden decided I just didn't want to do it. I never thought I'd be sitting behind a cubicle desk working insurance everyday. Its good job, but its not my dream at all. I always thought I would have kids right away after marriage, but that's not the case either. Its funny how God changes your plans while we are so busy doing other stuff. I love that about him. I long for the day I can stay at home and take care of the household and babies. I want the Beaver Cleaver just doesn't happen in this day and time very often.

Michelle said...

I suppose I'm where I thought I would be...married with kids and back home. I didn't necessarily think I'd end up with two boys, but I never thought about what gender my kids would be, either. Just wanted them to be healthy and they are! Praise the Lord. Professionally speaking, I didn't imagine that I would be a desk nurse working insurance claims..but it's a good job with good benefits, so I can't complain.

Liked this post, B Lines! And, the stars in your crown will be much bigger for having stayed at home with your kids!

Les said...

I'm not where I thought I would be, but I'm loving where I am. I thought I would already have several children by this point, but in retrospect I'm glad that I'm still childless. I'm thankful that I waited until I was older to get married, and I'm looking forward to being a little older when I have children. I was young and naive when I made "future plans," but thankfully God knew better!

~ Our Humble Cottage ~ said...

That is so funny about you wanting to go to Scotland. I have a pen pal from there. I have always said that I do not wish to leave America to visit any other country but if I do, Scotland it is. My friend sends me photos and B, it is so beautiful!

Am I where I thought I would be? Hmmm. I always wanted to be a mother, wife, dancer and singer. Now, the singing part is apparently hopeless, according to the people in my family;-) I used to dance (not dance lessons or anything, just dancing) but have not since gaining weight. But I am a mother and a wife. I love it, most of the time. I find it fulfilling and wonderful. There is nothing better to have your child come up and hug you and say "I love you Momma". Even when they do it a dozen times a day.

I didn't have high hopes really, not seriously. I went to college but only because my counselor encouraged me. I was lost and felt stupid most of the time. I know now, that I could have made it had I applied myself. She had faith in me when I did not. But honestly, this is the life for me. I am happy that I get to stay home because a lot of mothers do not get too.

Your post was just another confirmation from God that I need to focus on the right track. On days when I feel I am failing I just need to look at my children and march on!

Oh, and I never, ever, thought I would be so unhealthy but we can remedy that. In a couple years I would like to say I am the best shape of my life. And to be debt free by that time too!

Great post!

~ Mrs. Louisa Gabrielle ~