43.

I feel like since I’m not having a breakdown for my birthday this year, I should write something that might inspire someone else. I’m not necessarily sure how to do that! This has been such an intriguing, hard, giving, taking, good and awful 365 days. But my over all take away has been great peace and strength. I’d love to wrap it up and give it to everyone I know.

I’ve spent a good, large portion of my life being  . . agnsty. Always thinking there was something better out there that was just out of my reach. That if I was better, smarter, more confident, thinner, happier, older, wiser, stronger, prettier, financially stable…things might go easier on me. What this year has shown me, is that really, I have it all right here.

I cant discount the numerous people who pop into my life and help me view things through different lens. I’m not even going to attempt to name them here. The list is long, and its deeply personal. I’ve had people come into my world for a day, or sometimes for years. But everyone makes an impact that has helped me form who I am. If you are reading this, you can probably count yourself as one of those people.

But this last year. This last year has been something unique in many ways.

I found my feet. Once I got settled into being alone and learned to embrace that quiet headspace. To realize I don’t have to be everything to everyone. To realize I wont ever be the perfect parent, or partner or person. I am faulted. But its ok. I bring something to the table. It might be an off kilter, slanted kinda unbalanced table at times. but that’s something.

I’ve found there are actually a lot of perks to being single. One, the house can get totally messy and no one judges you. Except maybe your kids friends.

On no kid weekends I might wear the same jammie pants and sweatshirt for three whole days. In fact, I might not change out of them at all! I am however still a compulsive shower taker/bubble bather so I’m not completely dude like in my slothlyness. (totally a word)

I can start a project. Use the downstairs bathroom as my tool box (by that I mean, my tools are EVERYWHERE) and except for the kids having to pee with the door open because the ladder is in the way, no worries!

I don’t know how I had TIME before, to do anything! I didn’t really. Now I can do whatever I want, whenever I want. Last weekend I read a book from 8 pm till 4 am. Slept for 4 hours then finished the book.

There are lots of other cool things I can do now, that I coudnt then but that wasn’t really what this was going to be about. I got side tracked by the awesomeness of single. (Something in my previous life I never thought I’d say)

**disclaimer – I’m not always a bubbling happy singleton. I do have ‘sit on my couch cry in my cocktail’ days. Trust me. At some point I’ll blog about that too. I’ll probably be a few cocktails in and delete it before you see it. That’s how I roll. But I am HUMAN and there is a thing called lonely that kicks in. Then the kids come home and all is ok in my world again . . .

I guess the gist of things is this. I’ve hit a point in my life where my skin fits. Where Im not feeling angsty. Sure, there are things Id like in my life. I have aspirations. I have goals. I have my pie in the sky “man I’d love it if I could accomplish THAT” list. But its not just a list. It’s a goal. Several. And there really isn’t anything stopping me from trying.

Once upon a time, me and my 3 girlfriends were going to buy a black van and drive to California.  We didn’t have a very good plan. Because in our head we would be rock stars. But none of us played an instrument. And we coudnt afford the van. And one of us was in college. And two of us had boyfriends. So we didn’t buy the van and we didn’t drive to California.  And that’s ok. We all got married and had babies and we have or are still raising them. Two of us are divorced. Two of us are still married. And that’s life.

But I sit here at the ripe old age of 43. And universe willing I have some miles left to travel. And really, I can do whatever it is I want to do.

I may not succeed at everything, or anything I try. But there is nothing keeping me from trying.

Im not going to buy a black van and drive to California. But I might do the next best thing. Time will tell.

In the mean time. I’ve been kicking around this marble long enough to know, if you want it. You have to go get it. You cant keep looking back going “but why, what if”. Sure, look back to get a good bead on what might have gone better, but keep your eyes forward. If you aren’t happy with something, change it. Really, change it. If you aren’t getting what you want out of your relationship, your friendships, your job, your life. Well change it. But sticking your feet in the sand and saying “im not happy! This isn’t working!” isn’t going to change a damn thing. LET GO.

If there is one lesson I learned this year, its that life will not be easy. Ever.

I started 2013 thinking, finally. 2012, that ungodly year is OVER. And 18 days into it we lost Casey. Well. Fuck.  I can spend the rest of 2013 lamenting, or I can take that loss, accept the grief that goes with it and keep on. And in retrospect, 2012 wasn’t so bad. Shit, I learned a lot right. Isn’t that the POINT OF IT ALL?

People come. People go. You love. You lose. You laugh, you cry. You try. You fail.

But if you keep learning from it all. You win big.

You never know what tomorrow will be. One day it might be an email that says “you winked at me”. And the path veers. And the next day it might be something else, that pulls your path another direction. Zig and zag. All over the map. That’s life. The universe is a funny thing. The plan is in place. You can fight it, you can grapple and struggle and stomp your feet. Or you can let go, enjoy the ride, quit being scared. Go live it.

I’m still watching the invisible threads that wind up this big crazy thing. What a cool strange trip we are on. I’m glad to still be a part of it. And I’m thankful for 43. And im glad, for all of you.

43. I have great people in my world. I have AMAZING children who are the coolest, smartest, most wonderful people you could ever hope to meet. And I have tomorrow. For the first time in a very long time I sit here on the eve of my birthday and feel a peace and happiness I’ve never experienced. And while I share it with so many, and I thank all of you for your contribution. I own it.

Nothing can top that.

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