|Ready for a book signing; Ready for the rest of my life!|
I'm sitting here in my pretty yellow office, house immaculate, kids in the living room watching a show, preparing to work out. There is a sunbeam shining through to my left, illuminating my hands as I type, tempting them to stillness like a happy napping cat but they resist its beckoning to stop my writing and go outside.
These past few weeks have been tumultuous to say the least but within the chaos, there has been a sort of calm that makes me smile. The reason is that at last, I know I am on the absolute right path.
I love my children. I have enjoyed every single moment of their babyhood and their demands took precedence over mine for 22 years but with my youngest about to turn seven I finally can start to fully turn much more of my attention to my own dreams and ambitions.
Of course seven isn't raised but it is a far cry from the demands of babyhood. I'm comfortable working around them, they spend a great deal of time in school and because I raised them, they are incredibly self sufficient and independent.
They're girls who are growing up with a mom who is not going to set the typical example of martyrdom that many girls see. They're going to see a mom who is forging every one of her dreams into reality and my dream for them is they will duplicate it. If I had sons they would have had a mom who taught the men in her life how to respect her and would duplicate that to the women in their lives.
What has prompted my pondering on this topic? Well two of my friends have recently had beautiful babies. And invariably, as I coo over their immense cuteness and chubbiness, I get the question. Do I miss having babies since I had such an affinity for the lifestyle of early family life when I was living it.
And my answer is a resounding no. My forties have been my very best decades so far. It is where I see that now I get time for what I want, what I want to do. I feel I have come into my own in this decade, I have never had better health, a clearer vision of what I want my life to look like and new dreams keep appearing and I now have more freedom to pursue them fearlessly and without encumbrance. It is liberating!
I am looking forward to a chance to live my own life, something that can't fully be done with one dedicated to parenthood, for either a man or a woman. Children are in no way a burden or a trap, but I always knew that I had more in me than parenting, that having small children to focus on was a temporary stage and that I needed a little more room to grow. I also knew I would take full advantage of the freedom when it came and it started with me writing a novel the year my youngest girl started school.
I am now free to explore the world with independence sometimes. I now have the abundance to enjoy more fully the freedom of being an individual for a week or two at a time, traveling with friends, staying in hotels, tasting new foods, drinking new wines, making and nurturing other relationships that serve the adult me.
I am free from Dora and Diego and Barney except in the joyful moments I spend with my Grandson and those moments are not often shared with a television!
I am free to take on new projects, ones I dreamed of doing for years, like a collection of books about Change Islands, my home town.
Yes there is still some planning but it's so much easier with big kids.
I cannot imagine the stress, emotional investment, the diapers and the demands on my time of a baby and looking back on the time when it was all I knew, I can't see how I did it then!
But to everything there is a season and that season, while fun, had its turn. Now the sun shining through the window on to my hand is an autumn light as the summer of babies and toddlers moves into its appropriate place in my nostalgic treasure chest. And the autumn I plan to live will be alive with red and gold and green and crisp with the breeze of newly found independence.
It's a Harvest Moon tonight. I will stare at its orange beauty later and wonder what will come to fruition in this Autumn season.I can hardly wait for that moon to shine on the crops of all of my new endeavors.