With mid-life, one has some time and experience to look back and really assess the situation of one’s life. It is a good time to make sure you are being your best self. That the decisions you are making are your own and that you can live with them.
A big part of my decision making, has been my desire to make my daughters’ proud. I wanted them to see me succeed in a general sense. And I have at times done that.
Now, as I ready for a change again, due to circumstances I will not go into, I am faced with telling them I am on the move again.
I think the reason I didn’t want to tell them and the reason I maybe stayed longer than I might have, is two fold. I like the money and the stability, however, I really didn’t want to tell my daughters’ I was quitting.
I have figured out why. Their father, a very good man, is as stable as they come. In this disastrous employment environment called the 21st century, this man has managed to stay with the same company in similar roles for 37 years. THIRTY SEVEN.
Now in comparison, I have had numerous jobs, three start ups and am also writing a book. Sorry, four businesses.
If one would make a side by side comparison between us; obviously one would be a winner and one would be a LOSER. However, it came to me recently that we are measuring people as if they come from the same mold. Apples to Apples.
I must be an orange. I love the thrill of a start up. The brainstorming, the dynamic mind melding that comes when a small group decides to chase their dreams. If not dreams, an incredible idea that they want to share with the world. The creative juices flowing and overflowing until you look down at your sweaty, blistered hands and realize that you have made something. Made something from nothing.
There must be great satisfaction in having a nice comfortable life with plenty of money, a job you go to everyday and enjoy. The contentment of a nice stable, career. I applaud those who have that. I celebrate that you love that or have that. Go Apples.
But it is when it is not wanted, but a self imposed necessity, that I find sad. Some have a fire inside that they let become embers. That the societal belief that one should stay in the same place and for the long term, and the shaming that happens when one chooses another life than that, is what we need to change.
We need to start appreciating the ones who take chances, the ones who looked at the odds and made the jump anyway. There is bravery and pride in going beyond the proven way.
Oranges have made the Iphone, they have built up cars that run on alternate fuels. They have built empires, and have struggled, each of them, along the way. There are Oranges that never make it, but they just keep trying.
What I cannot get behind any longer is the shaming. The expectations that one has to fit into this mold to be considered successful. I hope my daughters will see a Mom that went for it. That she might have been a little more nomadic than some, but she was always excited about creating and searching for the next big thing. Something to build, something to make. Something to write.
Apples make a huge contribution to society, and I am thankful for apples. I am thankful for oranges, and my God, those bananas. They are fabulous. We all have a place, with a job in being in this world.
There is room for all of us in this fruit bowl called life. Enjoy ~ Hazel.