Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Day 11: Dreaming of Being a Grown-Up

Friends, I'm 41 years old. It's time to grow up a bit, don't you think? That's part of what's going on here, I think. I've never been afraid of hitting certain age milestones. Turning 30 was just another day for me. My 30's, as a matter of fact, were way better than my 20's, which, of course, were better than my teens. In my 30's, I began to finally feel comfortable in my own skin. I began to relax and enjoy life. I was not so afraid anymore of what people might think of me and finally figured out who I am--and learned that I kind of liked being me.

It was with this sense of ramping up as the years marched on that I approached 40. I expected great things from my 40's. There was nothing to dread at all. My fortieth year was awesome. Really. It was AWESOME. Not to make y'all jealous, but I don't think anyone in the history of civilization has had a better 40th year than me. Read for yourself. I am truly grateful.

But something happened for me when I turned 41. I began to realize that I am past the days of my youth. I'm not a gloom and doom person, and I'm certainly not saying a woman of 45 or 50 or 70 can't be young at heart, but I felt strongly that I am supposed to be a grown-up now. It's high time I get my head out of the clouds and make something of my life--both for my own sake and the sake of my children, who have lived in a crazy, spontaneous world of messy, disorganized and unscheduled chaos for too long.

Now, yes, we have had fun. I'm not denying that. And I'm not saying that the fun has to stop. May it never be. I'm just thinking that we could have more fun, that we could do more cool stuff, that we could have more of an impact on the world around us if our lives were a little more orderly. And yes, having a significant impact on the world IS my idea of fun.

Think about the possibilities. With a clean house and a well-stocked freezer and pantry, a family of friends (or two!) could be invited over on the spur of the moment--whenever the urge arises. With adequate sleep at night, I would not be too tired to go do fun things or allow my kids to use our home as sleepover central. With our finances under control, we would be able to save properly for the things we feel strongly about--and maybe even take a real (non-work-related) vacation once in a while. With a working daily schedule, one in which school is completed on time and chores are accomplished and meals are prepared ahead for busy days, there is flexibility when a friend calls up with a crazy idea for a fun afternoon or evening of big kid and/or adult playtime--and no guilt afterward. When a home is organized, things can be found when they are needed and desired projects can be finished quickly. When a life is disciplined and orderly--there is much MORE room for spontaneity.

More possibilities for fun?

More room for spontaneity?

More potential for doing the things we really want to do in life?

Sign me up, baby.

If this is what being a grown-up means, then I should have done this a LONG time ago.


So I'm thinking this is the best possible form of a mid-life crisis. I am in crisis-mode to get our lives back. I am in a hurry to get our home in order, our finances in order, our home businesses in order, our daily routines in order. I know life will be better, then. I know the possibilities are endless, then. I know we can truly pursue our dreams, then.

And we have dreams, friends. Oh, we have dreams.

We went to a meeting tonight about pursuing a dream we've had for twenty years. Twenty years. I'll tell you about it tomorrow.

Journey on, friends. Keep pressing toward the goal. Don't lose heart. We can do it!


Simply Sandi said...

Girlfriend, I am so with you!! I am so excited to hear that I am not alone. Although, I hope that your crisis mode has not been drawn out as long as it has for me. I have been stuck-in-my-funk for A WHILE. I have been thru all the emotions: overwhelmed, denial, hopelessness, laziness, spurts of energy, and ultimately landed in crisis mode after I realized I just can't keep up with everyone else's "perfect life." I am jealous of those that can just have people drop by for a visit or volunteer to invite people over. I cringe when I think there is a chance someone will need to come over for anything.
I enjoy reading and looking at your progress because your home choas is so much like mine and you are showing IT CAN BE FIXED. I am still feeling doubt that I can make your progress and am afraid to commit to begin again because I know the hang over feeling of my past failures. To make it worse, I am a procrastinatic profectionist, if that is a real thing. I can spend an entire weekend working on MY closet. True, it is a large one, but my husband gives me more grief for spending that much time on one thing, that I actually walk away from a project wishing I hadn't done it in the first place. Is your husband always as good as the carpet project?! I have been mentally plotting my home strategy ever since I found your blog. I want to get where you are going. But, it pains me to admit, I am still trying to "think" of a plan that will not make me (and my hubby) more crazy. Did you just jump right in or did you go thru this agony in just trying to moving? Did you come up with a strategy to follow for the whole 31 days, or is this a work in progress? I think some of my anxiety is thinking I have to begin with the entire end in mind. Help, I beg you!! (send me your email and I will send you my pics)

Sherry C said...

Oh, Sandi. You are such a dear. I wish I could just wrap you up in my arms for a big hug and then we could sit at my (cleared off and washed!) dining room table for tea. You are SO not alone.

Honestly, I haven't gone into this whole crazy 31 days thing with a plan. I just jumped in because I know how my brain works. I process thought through writing, often not even knowing what my own conclusions will be until I get to the end of a page. I stick with things when they are public because I don't want to let people down. So this blogging opportunity was perfect for me. It fits the way I work.

As I write, my strategy is forming itself. Week One I focused on cleaning my kitchen and dining room. Week Two, I am working on the living room and upstairs bathroom. Weeks Three and Four, I plan to tackle...drum roll please...the basement. Ugh. That's the really yucky stuff. In between those home cleaning and organizing projects, I hope to fit in lots of other life cleaning and organizing things--just taking care of things that need to be done and over with. I started with getting myself and my family on a basic schedule because I know this about myself, too: I work better with time limitations and deadlines.

Just give yourself little goals--the bedroom closet in one day, the best you can, and then something else another day. With a little one at home, you can't expect to make sense of the chaos in one month. It's just not practical. Set yourself little goals that are achievable, check them off, then maintain the order in that one space while you move onto something else.

You can do it, friend!

Oh, and my email is on the contact page. Do you want your photos public or just for me? If it will help, send them.