I could sit here and take you back to when I was younger and where I thought I’d be by the time I turned 40, and yadda, yadda, yadda, but I won’t. Why? Because I more or less just did, just without specifics. What I will tell you about is the here and now. It’s safe to say that most people are not where they want to be at forty, whether it’s their career, family, location, living arrangements, kids, etc. If you are one of those lucky people, well done, but the fact is that you are in the minority. The majority of mi gente are not, and I am one of them.
Let’s start with the “not’s”. I am not in a career I want to be in. While fulfilling in some ways, it is severely lacking in most of them, especially money and creativity. Those two missing elements affect the other “not’s”. I am also not in the family situation I always thought I’d be in by now. I thought I would be married with at least one more child, but I am not. Due to my career choice, which was supposed to be temporary, I am also not living where I prefer to live or have the dwelling that I would prefer. These are some huge ass “not’s”.
Now let’s move on to the positives. Yes, they exist. On a positive note, I have accomplished a lot in my life and had some amazing adventures. I also have a stable job with a regular paycheck that allows me to live in a neighborhood with a top-notch school district. While we must live modestly due to the cost of living here, and in a much smaller home than I would like, it is a very safe area and my daughter is getting a fantastic education. I am also in a very fulfilling relationship with a great man who is also a family man who adores and takes excellent care of his children. While we are not married yet or living together, we are happy and headed in a good direction. Ally likes him too, which is always a plus. I may not have more than one child, but the one that I have couldn’t be any better if she tried. I got very lucky and feel blessed that she fertilized my egg, choosing me as her mommy. She is a gift.
I wish I could tell you all that everything balances out and that as a whole I am happy with my life, but that would be a lie, and I am all about the truth. The truth is that my life isn’t where I want it to be, I do still have dreams of that elusive something more, and I am still a work in progress. But that’s the point isn’t it, constantly progressing, constantly working, constantly striving. The fact is, I have ZERO idea of what the hell I’m doing anymore. I know more or less what I want, but I have no idea of how to get there, what that path looks like, if I will ever reach it, and what I will do when I do or do not get there. And that’s okay. What I am going through right now is perfectly normal and healthy. There is something about turning 40 that makes you both turn around to look back, then turn back around to look forward. I feel like, when I turned 40, I sort of did a sudden stop and yelled, “WAIT! What the hell just happened? What are we doing? Let’s figure this out before we take another step.” So that’s what I am going to do.