A Birthday Ramble

Anybody remember when blogs weren’t full of polished entries, but were more of a dumping group for whatever you were thinking at the moment? Well, welcome to 2005 because tonight I’m just rambling a bit.

It’s my birthday and I am now thirty-four years old. Thirty-four! For some reason the even numbers always feel a lot older than the odds.

So I’m feeling a little old, and I’m also pretty sure I’m done having babies, and suddenly I find myself thinking about what my next big project will be. Since the summer I’ve been feeling some rather intense pressure to “pick a lane.” I feel like I know how to do some things, and I’ve got some knowledge and skill, but I have no freaking idea what I should be doing.

I definitely think I should be writing about something. Took me six months to narrow that down. I have a few topics in mind, but I keep bouncing here and there, back and forth, and OH MY WORD JUST PICK A LANE!

Like I said, I think I’m narrowing it down, but it’s hard. In the whining about things that ridiculously not worth whining about department, it’s hard to pick a lane when no one really cares what you do. Doesn’t that sound melodramatic? I guess what I mean is I’m a mom. I’m a mom first and if I find something to do in my spare time, then great, but I could knit, or scrapbook, or whatever. Nobody’s waiting for me to start bringing home a paycheck. This should be a dream, but it leaves me with options–sooooo many options. A lot of options is dangerous. I know–woe is me.

So while I ruminate on what the heck I’m doing with my life–is this a mid-life crisis?–I’ll ask the people who read this blog about theirs. Have you picked a lane? What is it? If you could do anything you want starting tomorrow, what would you do?

This post brought to you by the number thirty-four.

woman smiling with pelican necklace

Maybe now that I’m old I’ll remember to wear makeup and stop taking pictures of myself with my cell phone. . . doesn’t seem likely, though.

 

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Comments

  1. I picked a lane when I was 18 and chose my college major. Now I’m 44 and I’m stuck in it. I need a Patron now. Ha. Someone to just give me money so I can paint and draw and just be. You can’t just be anymore. Unless you have a hubby with a job. Which I don’t. I don’t want a lane anymore. Wanna trade?? lol

  2. First off you are NOT old. Because if you are then so am I (and older!)

    I have a post kinda like this in my drafts. I so get what you are saying. Right now I’m focusing on the photography thing. We’ll see how it goes… :)

    • Elaine,
      I love your photography “thing” and am very envious of people who seems to have found a passion that makes them happy.

  3. I more or less fell into a lane…isnt that kind of how it goes? I try to be of the “it will work itself out” persuasion and just go with it. I get that this might not be the best plan but it usually does work out in the end. Plus you are only 34, write something, if it doesn’t work out try writing about something else. Sometimes the hard knocks and failed attempts make it really clear what you dont want to do so in my book that also counts as a win. Good luck!

    • You make excellent points–I think fear of failure is a big part of why I can’t pick. What if I pick and I fail? That’s like a double fail. I like your attitude about it better.

  4. First of all, happy birthday, Katy!

    Another even-numbered, thirty-something birthday awaits me next year. We’re not through with having babies, but I feel like any free-time I have should be spent retooling–brushing up my skill set–for an eventual return to work. Thing is, I don’t know what/when/how that will be. I’m technically grown up, but what I want to be when I grow up has changed. To what? I just don’t know. So, no wisdom here. Just commiseration, and more heartfelt birthday wishes! :)

  5. I feel you, Katy. I’ve been having the same kind of thoughts lately, and like you, it happened around my 32nd birthday. Not only do I need to “Pick a Lane!”, I need to find a lane that will help me bring in a paycheck and better insurance for the kiddo and still have time to do the writing thing better. I just don’t know how to do it all and still do all the stuff that needs to be done on a daily basis. And that is my rant, brought to you by the number 32.

    • I get what you mean! Not only do I want to do something, but I have to find the time to do it! I guess this adulthood thing is never easy.

  6. Bugladynora says:

    How MSN spaces of you! : ) I was that age and at home with babies and blogging was so helpful. I am a phlegmatic personality and get why picking a lane is hard. You will keep evolving as a mom, wife and person. It will be fabulous! Even if you switch lanes a few times figuring it out!

    • I thought the same thing as I wrote this! It’s like I’m on Spaces today!

      You have a lot of optimism–I guess it’s OK if I switch lanes. Better than hanging out in no lane all this time.

  7. I have a “few” years on you – I hit the big 55 in January. My kids are 10, 12, and 14 (I believe in the stair step method) I have a job I love – but not much outside of work other than the kids (youngest has autism and is non-verbal). In the past the lane that I was on was the one of care-giver – Great-aunt, mother, father, step-mother. I know by nature that is a part of who I am. Right now I am looking for the path that allows me to be me and still be able to be a good parent.

  8. Happy Birthday, Katy!!! I picked a lane a year or so ago, maybe around my 32nd birthday? Anyways, I went back to school this year, and the plan is a masters degree in counseling so that I can be a school counselor. My reasoning is two-fold – I want to address a growing issue with bullying, beginning with the elementary school kiddos, and I want to be on the same basic schedule as my son (DD with a genetic disorder). I’m pretty excited about all of it, and with an almost-six-year-old in the house, it’s the right time.

  9. I guess my lane is the “engineer who likes to write/travel/cook/eat/run/ski with a fairly new-found interest in yoga and a burgeoning desire to make a quilt” lane. Let’s just call it the carpool lane for short. :)
    I’d say just try a bunch of things and see what sticks. (Within reason- the guitar I failed to take up a decade ago was kind of expensive. I didn’t realize at the time that learning to play the guitar is physically painful until you build up calluses and once I built up calluses, I’d started grad school aka the three year hole in my life where fun went to die.)
    The important thing is to have fun and feel that you are nourishing your inner-self (I know that sounds mildly GOOP) but don’t just do something b/c you think you have to finish it. I’d probably whither and die if I had to make a scrapbook. (Which is why there’s a giant bag of wedding nonsense that people “saved for my scrapbook” that’s been in a corner of my house for nearly 2 years- haha!)
    Oh and sometimes you will wax and wane on things you get to do for fun (as opposed to things you have to do like work or take care of your kids) b/c your motivation will slip or you’ll find new things you’re more into. For example I was *really* into running for like 3 years and now I still love it but thanks to a combination of injuries, moving to a different climate, and picking up a new form of fitness that’s more appealing to me right now, I don’t adore it as much as I once did. I know it’s there for me to come back to so I’m not sweating it. :) So don’t use picking a lane as a reason to beat yourself up. :)
    Good luck!!

    • Oh, and Happy Birthday! (Duh!) I’ll leave you with one more anecdote. My mom, who you actually have a bit in common with in that you are bubbly rays of sunshine who are really good at taking care of people, hit 30 and decided that she needed to “be more serious” now that she was 30. So she tried to stop walking around with a giant grin on her face all the time and contemplate all the serious stuff that was going on in the world. She said it lasted for like a week before she gave up and went back to being bubbly. Haha!

      • Oh! I promise not to think about serious stuff for too long. I was very serious at around age 14 and found that it just left me feeling kind of unhappy. So that’s off the table! Thank you for the birthday wishes, and you make some good points up there–you don’t have to choose–I’m just feeling pressured to. And no one’s pressuring me! I’m pressuring myself. Gah.

  10. Haha, Katy! Your first lines about the blogs of yesteryear that were us vomiting on the computer screen made me chuckle. Oh, that’s not exactly what you said? Well, it’s what I am pretty sure I used to do…fond memories of the Spaces days, eh? I was just thinking today about how my blog has evolved over the last 6 years.

    As for “picking a lane”, I’m 43 and I’m not sure if I’ve picked one. The ONLY lane I am in for sure forever is the MOM lane. I toy around with the teacher lane and the writer lane. And I wonder what lanes will open up once I find myself the mom of adult children. I just try to keep driving and hold it in the road and keep my eyes open for what may be coming up. I definitely plan to keep writing and we’ll see where that takes me!

    You have plenty of time to pick a lane, girl. And whatever you choose, I know you’ll give 100% and be awesome!

    Hope you enjoyed your birthday! Happy 34th! Perhaps you busted out those kitten heels you used to love so well and write about back in the day?? ;-)

  11. The cool thing about life is you can pick a lane and then change lanes as often as you want! I picked a lane when I was 18 and headed off to college and became a special education teacher (my passion and knew I wanted to do that since I was in middle school). I drove in that lane for 22 yrs and toward the end tried juggling being a foster family too. New administration came into my school and I chose to bail versus doing some things I felt didn’t fit my morals/integrity. I kinda felt like I got pushed into another lane by a wayward car or something (I so love your analogy of lanes). Ok, so deep breath and God chose to send us some littles with special needs – hmm… all those years of teaching it maybe he was preparing me all that time for when our forever girl arrived in the wee hours of the morning (think 1 am) malnourished, no therapies etc… So my lane is now beign sahm to a bunch of amazing kids and one who we never could have adopted had I still been teaching, so lanes change and amazingly life is great. So enjoy your journey and try new things and realize at just the touch of a blinker you can change lanes. (also I am much older as in 48 so just keep looking ahead and keep your finger on the blinker). Happy 34th too!

  12. I’ve recently picked a new lane and I’m enjoying it! I’m looking for ways to improve and elevate my game each day :) Slowly but surely I’m building a web brand that I’m proud of. I’ve been enjoying our chats and discussing growth. :)

  13. HAPPY BIRTHDAY!

    Odd numbers always feel older to me. I always feel like I’m the last one to pick a lane, and then I often change. I had my first midlife crisis at 22. I say first because people tell me the earlier you have a midlife crisis the more you’ll have (fun fun fun). I feel the pressure to pick a lane more than I actually want to pick. I don’t see why people can’t be in a few lanes throughout their lifetime.