Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Tales of a Late Bloomer

I have interesting relationship with this blog.  It is something, like my faith, that I am sometimes far away from.  Yet, when I come back, it's still there, just the way I left it.  Without wavering, without judging.  Welcoming.

I've made vows to myself to write more regularly, but then life gets in the way.  Something comes up.  I'm supposed to be somewhere.  The phone rings.  The laundry is done.  The oven timer is going off.  It's time for soccer.  It's time for cub scouts.  Someone can't find their socks.  And it seems when I feel pressured to write something, that's the exact moment when my ability to manipulate the written word into something that anybody would actually be interested in reading completely abandons me.

I have all sorts of reasons for writing on my blog.  The first is to keep a record of moments that are meaningful to me, moments that I want to remember.  The second reason is to keep my family and friends close to me.  To let them see, even if I'm not with them, what my life is like.  To let them see a piece of me, of my family.  Another reason is that something that somebody reads might mean something to them.  It might change their opinion, it might change their perspective.  It might make them feel less alone in whatever struggles they might be going through.  Maybe they can identify with something that has happened to me and they can feel better about managing trying times for themselves.  Another reason is to help me sort through issues.

If you've read my blog, one issue that you know that I've used this platform to sort out is to go back to school or to stop going back to school.  And I've really struggled with this for the past three years.  It seems I never solve the problem.  It's just something that seems to circulate around in my head, a cycle that never stops.

The truth is, I did recently have to put an end to the cycle when I forced myself to make a decision to withdraw from school in the middle of the semester.  I cried.  I mourned.  And for a brief moment, thought if I re-enrolled that I would feel better...though I've been down that path a few times and know better. 

I know what you're thinking.  You've heard this before so why was this time so different?  This time, I made the decision swiftly and surely.  I made it in the midst of a crisis, while my youngest son was in the hospital with salmonella poisoning.  During day two of his seven day hospital stay.  The same day that my professor emailed me and congratulated me on getting the highest grade on my organic chemistry exam.  (My son is fine now, by the way.)

I made the decision in that time and place because I knew if I made it then, it would stick.  My sweet husband begged me not to make a hasty choice, telling me that no one should ever make a decision in the thick of crisis.  I told him I disagreed and said that a crisis is exactly the time to make decisions.  During a crisis is when your priorities are brought to light and are made clear to you.

While I know I made the right choice...a choice that I have made several times before...I am now struggling with the feeling that I'm floating freely, without any anchor.  And quite frankly, that free-floating sensation scares that crap out of me sometimes.  When I was in school, I was anchored at the library, in the chemistry lab.  And now, at home, I'm the one doing the anchoring.  At school,  I found my sense of self in achieving the objectives I set to get me to the next thing (nursing school).  Right now, there is no next thing.

I'm just here.  Doing everything and doing nothing at the same time and the dichotomy of those emotions unhinges me a bit sometimes.  It unhinges me because I don't know where it leaves puts me in a gray area and I don't do well with gray.  The irony (and the challenge) is that I'm not seeking a solution to this emotional hiccup...which is fortunate because I don't think there really is a solution in the near and not so distant future.

I have always known I was going to be a late bloomer, only now I've realized exactly how late the blooming is going to be taking place.  And despite my ranting, I am okay with that.  I find a sense of peace knowing that one day, at the end of what I hope is going to be a very long life, I'm going to look back and not have any regrets about any of the decisions I made.  So while they might not be the decisions I want to make,  I have faith, unwavering faith, that at some point in my life, I will see that they were the very right decisions.

While I know I will continue to look out on the horizon and ask "What if?", there is a part of me, a very big part of me, that is relishing in the moments with my boys.  I joke with Adam that I'm too young to be retired, but I'm thinking that what I'm going to find is that my work has only just begun.

I hope to continue to share this journey with you here on my blog.  If you're joining me for the first time, I can promise that you will never see daily updates from me.  But I can also promise, if you check back with me after a while, what you will find is a story about my life, about my family, about something that has moved me deeply enough that I think it could move you, too.

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