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Motherhood May Have Come and Gone

8 Aug

When I last checked, I had a total of 22 nieces and nephews (including several greats).  I have since stopped counting and have decided to use use my brain cells for other things; I just can’t keep up anymore.  As you can imagine, I have had my share of babysitting and caregiving.  At times I have watched 6+ kids at once and not only did this include my nieces and nephews, but also the children of other relatives and/or family friends.  Everyone knew my M.O., if they get out of line, I will whoop yo’ kids.  With my family being the way it is, EVERYONE was okay with that.  Respect is very real and more parents today need to take a step back several decades (when the village really did take part in child rearing) and teach their children more of it.

Yesterday was one of the most gorgeous days of the summer.  It was about 85 degrees, sunny with an ever so slight breeze and the humidity was next to nothing for a change.  I live around the corner from a shopping mall and since I don’t typically cook on Saturdays, I decided to head outdoors and take a walk over to the mall into the food court for lunch.  I had no other plans and was suffering from a degree of boredom, so on my walk back I decided to sit in the marketplace plaza situated directly in front of where I live.

There are several stores as well as condos and other apartment buildings surrounding this plaza.  The scope of the neighborhood is generally made up of working class families with small children, stay at home moms, grandparents who are caregivers by day, nannies, dog walkers and single career folk like me.  In the wintertime it is transformed into an outdoor ice skating rink; in the summertime it is filled with cafe tables and chairs with the biggest attraction being 3 brass elephants situated directly in the center of the plaza that spew out water.  The kids go crazy for this and with the hot days of summer in full effect, it is always full of people.

I watched the children (some in swimsuits others in play clothes) run all over the plaza, get wet, fill up water pails, squirt each other, hide from their parents, throw tantrums when they had to leave, etc.

I watched the parents (some looking stressed, some relaxed) as they chatted with each other, ran to their children’s aid when they slipped and fell, cried for no apparent reason, needed a play companion, were being mischievous, chase and call out to them when it was time to go, etc.

I used to do all of these things as a babysitter.  And I desired to do it full time with children of my own.

But yesterday as I quietly watched, it hit me how much my mentality has changed.  I have had such freedom; I’ve left the state or even the country when I’ve gotten ready, I go out with friends, enjoy drinks (even too many drinks if I feel like it), I go out on dates when I get ready, I go running for miles because I like to, I have peace and quiet at home when I just want to shut the world out.  I shut my ringers off sometimes, I order take out when I don’t want to cook, I can sleep in late and without having to worry about someone waking me up saying they are hungry and need me to cook.  I only have to shop for myself, I can waste money on a $600 designer bag and not worry about having enough left over for diapers or an activity fee for summer camp or daycare.

Has freedom and selfishness squeezed the life out of my maternal instincts?  Do I still want children this late in the ballgame?  If I choose not to, will I regret this decision when I am old and gray and possibly need someone to look after me and my business affairs?

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Crossroads

7 Jun

I stepped onto the scene 39 years ago on June 7, 1971 (yup today’s my birthday) in a small city by the name of Canton, Ohio.  True NFL groupies know it well.  I must have checked my Facebook page at least 10x today as I basked in the well wishes bestowed upon me by friends gained through the years.  The outpour made me feel thought of and loved.  An ex-boyfriend even had the “nerve” to personally deliver me flowers and an ancient piece of Louis Vuitton luggage that I tried talking him out of over 7 years ago.  I collect old luggage and he figured since the worthless thing was sitting in his basement suffering from water damage, mildew and collecting dust he would finally rid himself of it.  His trash, my treasure.  We’ve become the friends that we were never able to be when we were dating.  It’s funny how things turn out.

I am sitting at home alone preparing a champagne toast for myself as I contemplate the fork in the road that I face.  You see, I have officially reached mid-life crisis mode.  I’ve worked in the corporate world for so long and I must admit that I was caught up in the hype of the politics for quite some time.  For a while I thought that as long as I could gain a promotion here and there, $10K here $20K there + bonuses and continue climbing the ladder, I would be A-Ok.  However, my respect and patience for it all started to unravel about 5 years ago…

I wanted to be happily married with children by now and have riches unforetold.  Of course we all know that life has it’s own share of twists and turns and that our plans are usually not the same as Gods.  Thus far, my path has included many things, just not the husband, children, or unforetold riches!  Now I really can’t complain because I definitely have my share of God given happiness.  It’s just that you know when we’re dealing with the Great I Am, we all have a tendency to say “but God what about…” even though we need to be happy within the here and now.

I graduated with a degree in Fashion Design and I started out on that career path, my passion, but all of these years later I have deviated from it.  I must say, I have picked up some crazy efficient skills from corporate America that are invaluable.  But when my love for the corporate world begin to unravel in my heart and mind, I realized more than ever that I missed my passion and that I needed to go back.  I would voice my thoughts to select people and would get compelling feedback and confirmations from them.  One of them told me that “If you put the effort into your own business that you put into this job, you would have been a millionaire already.”  I took that to heart.

It still took me a few years, but in the in between I realized that it was time to leave corporate America, go for my passion.  My mother laughed at me when I told her a couple of months ago that I had finally matured to the point where passion was first and money was second.  You see, the universe usually shows you that when you are happy pursuing passion, the money most certainly follows very closely behind.  I’m banking on that because I know me, and what I am capable of.

I still want that husband and those kids though, along with that well paying passion.  However, in light of time, one may not really make time for the other so at 39 years of age I am at a crossroads.  I may have to leave one of those desires behind.

This is the basis of my life right now.  I have created this blog on my 39th birthday to keep you AND ME posted.