Shortly after my friend's 42nd birthday, she sat in my car and sobbed. "All the things I wanted to do with my life... I've failed. Now I can't do them. I'm too old."
At 15 years her junior, it felt ridiculous for me to console her. Not only were my 30's stretching out before me, but I had 20's left to go. I remember trying to tell her stories I'd read about people, notably older than she, who started a new business, tried new things. I tried to explain that she wasn't to old to learn new skills.
It is strange, though, as a child you dream of what you want to do when you grow up. You finish high school and head into college thinking that you have to make this decision by the time you're 19. I remember how heavily these decisions weighed on me my freshman year of college. I picked a major, Communications Broadcast with an emphasis in Sales. I finished college, got a job and put Wendell through school.
After I had Emma and no job I tried to find some kind of relevance to my life. Stay-at-home momhood hit me hard. I tried my hand at a couple of MLMs and started up more than one business only to find no success. When Emma was in 1st grade, I went to my first PTA meeting. Soon I was signed up to do the Carnival, help with Reflections and more. And I felt a kind of coming home.
For now, volunteering fills that void that I had previously experienced. I know that I'm helping my school. During an average school year, I probably spend 5 hours a week at the school or in some volunteering basis. And I'm happy. But I also know that this is not all.
At 31 and with my 32nd birthday approaching, I wonder what I'll be when I grow up. There is so much that I could do. So much that I could give. I simply try to keep my mind and my heart open to possibilities. Knowing that whatever I do must fit the parameters of my life (work around my kids' and hubby's schedules) or I won't enjoy it. But knowing that there will be something, constantly something to look forward to. And I'm glad that I have 60 more years of my life to do it in.