Thursday, October 6, 2011

thinking deep thoughts

I've felt like I've stood at a crossroads for a long time, trying to figure out what I'm supposed to be doing with my life. "The season of my discontent." I've fallen into a pattern of living the way others expect me to, a strange conformity to unspoken rules and unwritten laws. Strange fears govern my behavior and choices, and I don't understand how this has evolved. (I don't mean like I'm suffering mental illness, really. This includes how I dress the way "women my age in my town should dress" but who really dictates my dress code? Clothes are a small, silly example of what I mean, but it's the most tangible example I could come up with today.) Recently I read a quote that suggested one should live the life they imagine--I'd seen that quote before, but it struck a nerve this time. What's stopping me? I'm starting to ask myself this and I'm stepping back to examine my life. Is it possible to purge what I don't like and fill it up with what I want to do?

I'm considering my habits, my diet, my appearance, my activities, the way my house looks and the way my family interacts with each other and with our community. Everything is on the table right now and I suddenly feel like I've taken a step in the right direction.

What will remain of this life? What will change?

What does the life I want to live look like?

Spill it, reader. Are you living the life you want to be living?

28 comments:

  1. My life is beautiful: filled with children who adore me and support me as I care for them; families into which I have been accepted as an integral part; husband of twenty-five years who stills finds me sexy and smart even when co-dependency with daughter needs adjusting; a community and neighborhood that rally round when needed; a home I can afford to keep and keep up, with a yard full of growing fruits, flowers and trees; a gorgeous calico long-haired cat who lays near me lots of the time-no lap but on the desk she will allow me to pet her.

    Once or twice a week I take a few mins and appreciate all that I have and understand that there are many, many who have little.

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  2. Hmmmm.....I'm so there with you! I have finally come to the conclusion that every second of my life is for a purpose..so I should be living them On purpose! Contentment with where I'm at for the moment has been life changing. (Not me changing for the moment, but growing, molding, into a refined piece of gold!)

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  3. Wow, I guess I am, for the moment. I am content. I love my home and family. I did purge one thing I didn't like (working - ha ha!) but have yet to imagine what I really want to do.

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  4. I went through a period of reevaluating a few years ago. I think it is always a really useful exercise, even if we find that some changes can't be made immediately.

    Most of my life I am very happy with. Some of the things I'd like to change will simply have to happen with time --for instance, there are things I'd like to get involved with at work, but I can't make the time commitment right now because Emma still needs a lot of my time (and that's a commitment I made 11 years ago and have to fulfill).

    One change that I made around a year ago was to try to live my life with a more positive attitude. Some things in my life (mostly work life) were really bad for a few years, and feeling negative can become a habit. I feel that I've broken that habit now, and I'm happy I was conscious enough of how I was feeling to make that change.

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  5. I wear yoga pants every day. And I like it that way ;-) But yeah, I'm never the cutest mom during preschool drop off...

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  6. Any thinking person examines their life as you now are. It is a good thing and beats following blindly what others dictate to us.

    I haven't been content in awhile but am certainly working on it. For me, moving from working to not working has been a difficult transition but I know where I want to be within the next year.

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  7. I am living the life I want to live for the most part. When in a marriage there are always compromises, but this is my second marriage and I was totally ready for compromise in order to live this life.

    I grew up in a small midwestern town and certain things back then, were expected of a person. Maybe that's why I moved away when I was young... to another state where people were more forgiving and everyone was from somewhere else... Arizona.... no one in Arizona grew up there. Everyone was a transplant, so you could be who you wanted to be. Best thing I ever did in life was leave Iowa where life was simply far to conservative for me. Call me a rebel if you will.. LOL

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  8. I think good results will come for you by this introspection. Maybe you will find one or two changes you can make, an outlet for creativity and exercise are helpful for me, and enjoyable.
    Let us know what you come up with.

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  9. Amen.

    Sometimes putting everything on the table leads to clearing the clutter that sucks the joy out of What Really Matters. Having been on hiatus from everything for much of the summer with my knees, I'm doing something similar. Except that examining and choosing what gets put back on the table after having it cleared completely is a slow process. So far the only absolutes are the mister, the offspring, and the outflows of Faith.

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  10. OMG - I could have written this. It's not that I don't appreciate what I have or where I am, but it's a far cry from what I envisioned for myself. Now, at 55, I think it's too late for me and that time has passed me by. With caring for Ron, I'll never be in a place where I can live out any of my dreams. I try to not let this make me sad but some days it is harder than others.

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  11. I'm almost there.
    I felt more like you did when I was raising young kids.
    Now we live where nobody knows us and we can just "be".Moving to Florida really felt like starting over for both of us.
    We're not quite in the location where we are meant to be, but that will come within a few years.

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  12. I'm getting there. Not quite there yet, but moving closer.

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  13. YES!! I love that you are so OPEN to different doorways right now!!!

    Each minute you choose...those minutes add up...!

    Your life is beautiful and blessed now ~ you can have a new beauty...receive and share different blessings...grow something different in your Self!!

    HOW EXCITING to be where you're at!!

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  14. My life is incredibly complex. There's no answer to that question, not here.

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  15. I volunteer & participate in all the things that parents do with school-age children---it's been worthwhile but I'm ready to move on after my last one graduates next year.

    I would like to take/make the time to explore some creative avocations like painting and writing.

    Oh hell, I just need to stop using my kids as an excuse for why I don't do it now! MIME

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  16. Yes and no. I recently lost my job. I really wanted out of that job but the way it happened hurt. I need to get past that, though. I am enjoying my time off, spending my days organizing and painting our new house, and bumming around with Lola. It is a temporary thing; we are not yet able to quit my income. So I must return to the life of the full time working mom. I wish it weren't so.

    Oh and somebody, please, kick my butt in gear to get fit and lose that weight!

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  17. Pretty much. I'm always trying to become the person I want to be. I fail. But I'm still trying :)

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  18. I'm getting there. Little by little, everyday.

    Asking the questions you're asking is a huge part of getting to where you want to be.

    And it's totally possible to purge your life of what you don't like and fill it up with what you want. I did it. You can too.

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  19. I've noticed this happens to so many women when our youngest child starts school full-time.

    We look around and have lots of time to do stuff and we think "What do I want to do? Aaargh, I don't KNOW!" So we reinvent ourselves. It's great! Like being a teenager, but so much better.

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  20. I love my family, my husband and girls bring me so much joy...but me, I want to do so much more for ME!! I feel like I can't get started, like my feet are in Quicksand. I want to do it, but is it fear from stopping me?

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  21. In a month I'm looking at my last birthday in my 40's and I'm wondering where the heck my life went. My 20's, 30' and now 40's have flown by and all I've managed to do is make it day by day. My life has turned out nothing like I imagined it would, but I think it's better. But there's also a part of me that says...here I am, 48 years old and what have I accomplished besides launching these 4 kids, two of which do not appreciate me nor can abide even having a conversation with me. And as I casually looked for a job recently, I discovered that my skill set is a mile wide and an inch deep. I don't even really know what I like to do....except read and write. So that's what I do.

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  22. Right now my life is not at all what I want. I'm giving myself a year to change that.

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  23. I have often thought this but have never really said it out load. If you figure it out, let me know, I could use some direction.

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  24. I like this post and I'm interested to hear how your answer those questions for yourself. :)

    I am not "there" yet and I'm trying to come up with a way to achieve the life I want. I did, at least, give up a career that literally made me want to kill myself. My new career is not what I want, but I can stick with it for a while and be OK. I have a plan to stay at my current job for two years and use that time to save money and come up with a way to earn my living doing something I love, (i.e. something creative).

    I know it's not all about earning a living, but I would really like to love what I do.

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  25. I'm always thinking of things I need to change. So, I could really relate to this post.

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  26. I am obsessing over this lately, since I had a big health issue in the summer, I constantly think-is THIS what my life is meant to be? Am I doing all I should?
    I def need to make changes and once I get over the newness of my health issue, I'm all over it (I'm going to a foster care adoption meeting this month, as well as signing up to become a youth mentor).

    Good post!

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  27. What a wonderfully written post sweetie. I do believe as long as we take breath we'll still be strivin' to improve our lives. I for one want to be the best I can be and a blessin' to others.

    God bless and enjoy your beautiful week sweetie!!! :o)

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  28. I quit my cubicle-based day job a year and a half ago to start my own business. It was a leap and in the beginning felt very much like a "step 3. profit" scheme that's missing the middle (http://www.sciencecartoonsplus.com/gallery/math/math07.gif)

    I'm lucky though because I had a support network in my partner and it worked out faster than I expected.

    Now I'm a small business owner workaholic, but I really love it.

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Spill it, reader.