Growing up

My kids are 13 and 12, discovering the world, and themselves.

Their 38-year-old mother is discovering the world, and herself.

Sometimes, I think the clock stopped when I was 24. Books stopped. Movies stopped. Music stopped. Opinions – well they could not possibly stop, but they were less expressed.

I wrote. I dreamt. I read.

But everything I wrote was to serve other masters. To sell homes, holidays, happiness.

I dreamt about packing lunches, bus stops, report cards. I did. I woke up in the morning relieved that those were just dreams.

I read but everything I read just filled my head and made it spin and took me far away and brought me right back.

Make no mistake, it was a fulfilling life in itself.

Then suddenly my children were older and did not need my hands, my lap, my thoughts every minute.

Now what?

I find my feet again. I invest in friendships again, and give more time to those I already have. I walk my city and explore: it’s like being out in the sun again after a long winter. I read to develop my opinions, and learn to talk about non-parenting issues.

I’m more than ready to leave my children’s protective embrace.

I discover time has not really stopped at 24. I feel less passionately about some things and more passionately about others. I’m wiser and more confident, and yet, sometimes I feel like it’s all new and different.

How would I have grown, if at 24 I had not become a mother? Would I have grown differently?

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I once wrote a diary. When I read it now, it seems childish. Then I wrote a book blog. When I read that now, it seems childish too. See a pattern? I write for a living, and so I've almost stopped writing for myself. The editor who's taken up permanent residence in my head, often strangles my words and ideas at birth. So am I an optimist as the title suggests? I don't know and I don't think I'll be any the wiser by blogging, but I do know one thing - I love beauty - in ideas, in words, in buildings, in art, in science, in clothes, in cats, in make up. Fortunately, even though my pores are on display in the profile picture, this is not going to be an up-close-and-personal, warts all take on my life. In fact, I'm not sure what it is going to be!

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