20 July, 2011  |   5 Comments

On the eve

Birthday BoxI turn 36 this week.

Thirty-six is one of those birthdays that makes me gasp a little, put my hand on the nearest wall and say, wait, WHAT?
I’m not gasping because I’m getting old, I like getting old.
There’s power in age.

It’s coming to terms with the expectations I had.

See, when I was a kid, I spent a lot of time dreaming about how awesome it would be to be a grownup.


When I was a grown-up, I would:

Go to restaurants when ever I wanted.
Eat all the donuts in the world.
Dress myself exactly as I wanted to.
Have very, very, very long hair.
Run inside.
And most of all, I would enjoy choice, glorious, glorious choice.

No one would make my choices for me.
Just me, me and my choices.

Problem is, whether due to money, time-constraints, or the demands of tiny, helpless offspring, life choices haven’t felt like mine.

As I prepare to move on from the last 5 years of self-employment (Isn’t it crazy that when I started Maplevine, I said I’d do it for 5 years and then move on to something else? And then at FIVE YEARS TO THE DAY, I’ll be starting my new jobby job. We listen to ourselves! We do!), as I prepare to move on to something else, I am giddy.

I get to try on some new habits, be something new.
And mostly, out of all of this, I want to own my choices.

I want to make my choices the best they can be.
I want to choose wisely.
I want to choose what I WANT.

But I have no idea how to get started.

Do you own your choices?
Or does life feel like a series of choices you have to make?
How do you choose?

5 thoughts on “On the eve

  1. 1
    Bev Weidner says:

    Well, let’s start by pouring a glass of wine. 🙂

    Happy early birthday!

    For me, I find that choices are something we own, but also at times something we owe. There’s a fine line of knowing what choices best benefit me, and best benefit others.

    Being a grown up is HARD. But hey, we have the wine.

  2. 2
    Holly says:

    I think the best and wisest choices we make come from a place of good intentions. Intentions with clarity. It’s our judgment of the outcome of those choices that make us feel that their value is either bad or good. And who needs more judgment?

    We can’t know the future, so we can only lead with our intent. And personally I think if you are doing that, all choices will work out for the highest good, whether it’s immediately clear or not.

    Now getting clarity on what you want in order to make those choices full of intent…therein lies the challenge. I just had a very long winded discussion with my boyfriend about this exact topic last night!

    (I want to edit this to not sound like a Yoda knock-off and can’t quite figure out how, because that is NOT my intent at all, but you know…it’s 2 in the afternoon and I’m perhaps needing just one more cup of coffee… 😉

    Anyway, congrats on the new job — hooray for new challenges!

  3. 3
    Helen Jane says:

    Bev, I LOVE what you said about choices owned and owed. Great way of putting it into perspective.

    And Holly, you’re totally channeling Our Lady of Intention, Oprah, duh. I have to figure out my intent.
    Be “successful?”
    Support my network?
    Be me?

  4. 4
    Michele says:

    Learning to live with the choices in my 30’s that I made in my 20’s. They weren’t bad choices, but profound all the same. What a responsibility they are, those choices, particularly when one must live with them their whole life. Is this how we earn the wisdom that comes with age?

    To that end – happy birthday!

  5. 5
    may says:

    I’m struggling a little bit with feeling like I’m making my choices instead of being forced into them. Feeling trapped puts me in martyr/crone mode and it’s not pretty. Feeling the pressure of impending life decisions puts me in panic mode, which is also not pretty. Sigh.

Hooray for replies!