Each morning I wake up and realize, I’m not in Kansas anymore. No, I’m not trying to rip off lines from the 1939 movie The Wizard of Oz, I really wake up and think, I’m not in Kansas anymore and boy has my life changed.
When I graduated from high school, I had one goal. Get the hell out of my hometown as fast as I could. I ended up accepting an offer from Wichita State University and moved to Kansas. My 5-year plan was to get my degree in sports administration and move to Arizona. I’m not sure why I picked Arizona but that’s what my goal was and fortunately, I never made it. I lived in Kansas for 15 years and then decided it was time to move on. It was time for new scenery.
My life had been full of setting goals for myself and achieving them, being Miss Independent and doing whatever I wanted without asking anyone. I ran my first marathon under four hours and I raced up Pikes Peak and didn’t die. I traveled all across the country. In Hawaii, I ran on the beach in my bridesmaid dress. I drove cross country with my friend Emily to Woodstock where we slept in a tent and watched our “neighbors” shoot up heroin. I even, on a whim, drove to New Jersey to celebrate NYE. I was at Wrigley Field the day Darryl Kile was found dead in his hotel room. I had a ton of great experiences being Miss Independent.
Then, after years of saying I would never get married or have children, I finally got married at the age of 30 and my life changed. We all say our lives change after marriage but my life really changed. I now had someone whom I was dependent on. At first that was a great feeling, then it became scary.
Fast forward a few more years and I’m living in Charlotte, NC. I’ve started a new job and then something happens. I get pregnant. On purpose. I have a beautiful baby girl and she changes my life. I no longer want to be Miss Independent, I want to be everything I can for this little girl. She teachers me that it’s OK to need others in my life and reaffirms this every day. My career is no longer as important and I give that up to stay home with her. Something Miss Independent would never do.
Now as I’ve returned to the work force again, my priorities are different. I take pride in my work but my goal is to come home and be with my daughter. To listen to her tell me about her school day, to play role playing games where she’s the mommy and I’m the daughter. Hearing her laugh is much more fulfilling than hitting a budget goal. So Miss Independent is still there but she’s left down her guard just a little bit. And she doesn’t mind at all.
I’m linking this post up at Tales of the Nursery’s Because Blog Prompts Are Fun #2. Won’t you join us?