When I was in the naive bliss of adolescence, I had it all figured out. I would marry at 23, start a family at 25 and be finished having kids by 30 so I could enjoy my perfect little life. Sound familiar? Wanna guess how that turned out?
I’ll tell ya. I got married (the first time) at 26. We were in love. This was for better for worse. This was for richer or poorer. This was for life. There was no stopping me now. Time to get back to my perfect little plan, right? Wanna guess how that turned out?! Yep. Divorced 3 years later. I know, I know, 3 years is not a long time at all, but trust me, it needed to happen and we’re all better off because of it. I’ll spare you the details. Judge away, if you must.
So, now what. How was my perfect plan ever going to work now?! I was already 29 years old!! How it worked was I turned that excruciatingly painful time of my life into a time to grow. Sure, I could have crumbled (I may have crumbled for a minute), but the last thing I was going to do was be held down by this pain. I like to think I haven’t stopped growing since. This is when I realized that you can plan all you want, but in the end, life happens. So I started to live. I started to love me. I started to figure out just who exactly I was. I met a guy. We did EVERYTHING backwards according to societal “norms”. We lived together. Then, we had a baby. Then, we bought a house and THEN we got married. A year and a half later, we had a second child. Now, we are over here just trying to survive life. Sound familiar?
People always think that just because I’m a therapist that I am supposed to have it all figured out. Wanna guess how that turns out?!?! LOL While I am confident in my ability to help my clients figure their lives out and make the changes they need, I am still a 30-something, wife and mother to two kids under 5, in the absolute trenches of this thing called life. There are times when I am 100% on my game both at home and professionally and killing it, but there are other times when I am literally clawing just to hold my shit together. I’m over here making parenting mistakes, just like you. I’m over here being pissy with my husband because he has the ability to stop moving and fall asleep and I’m exhausted and can’t sleep, just like you (right???). I’m over here struggling to maintain my cherished friendships because I can’t even go to the bathroom alone, let alone have an adult conversation. I’m over here trying to be a kick-ass mom, wife, girl boss, therapist, friend, woman and human and some days I think “oh hell yeah, I got this” and some days I’m like “yeah, this is hard AF, I’ll try again tomorrow”. THIS is life and life is hard. Parenting is hard. Humaning is hard. Pain is hard. Growth is hard. If it was easy, there wouldn’t be a need for therapists 😉
Of course, I try to “practice what I preach” in therapy, but as you know, it is hard. Throughout all of my life experiences, I have become a personal development junkie. I like to think I’ve grown a lot over the years, but I definitely still have a ways to go. I believe that growth is forever. We never achieve it all and we’re not supposed to.
I say all of this, not to bitch and complain and certainly not to sound like a complete disheveled hot mess, but to show that I AM HUMAN. I am a therapist and I am human. I am a wife and I am human. I am a mother and I am human. I am a friend and I am human.
The point of this post is to teach the invaluable lesson to sit back and hold on because life takes unexpected twists and turns. Ups and downs are inevitable. Things will most likely change and your plan will get thrown off course. Don’t let this ruin your outlook on yourself or your life and certainly don’t get caught up comparing your current shitstorm to someone else’s painful growth. The sooner you learn to adapt to the change and live in each and every moment, the better off you’ll be. Be you. Own You. Embrace You.