Redefining Moments

Contributor: dan,

Are you the same person you have always been? Are you the same today as you were ten years ago? Do you wake up each morning and walk through life taking the exact steps you took the day before? Or are you a piece of clay that is continually being molded–shaped and caressed into a masterpiece. So many questions.

I have found myself so overwhelmingly busy lately that I have not had the time to sit and write (well at least for this site) as much as I have wanted to. Between remodeling my house, jury duty, multiple activities with the kids, writing articles for hire and so much more, I have barely had time to sit and eat a meal let alone gather my thoughts on paper. The problem with that is without having this outlet I find my mind spinning in every direction. It has made me feel like the man in the circus who enters the ring with a pile of sticks and a pile of plates and one at a time he begins to spin the plates atop each stick until he has more plates and sticks spinning around him than you can imagine.

The difference is with the circus act the man can still focus, he can focus on his one true goal–keep the plates spinning and don’t let them fall to the ground. For me, having all of my thoughts and ideas spinning around in my head just gets frustrating and instead of embracing them all and finding the time to deal with each thought individually, I start questioning them all.

So here I am thoughts spinning out of control, questions consuming each thought and busier than I have been in a long time when a face from my past meets up with me–actually a face from my mother-in-law’s past, but a past that still involves me. Here was her best friend from childhood, a woman who saw every moment of my husband’s life and who spent years listening to her best friend talk about me. Did she know me? Yes, but more through my mother-in-law than very much time actually spent with me. But she did know me, and quiet well.

You see my mother-in-law was my biggest fan in life. When times were tough she stood by my side and cheered me on. She loved me as if I were her own. But on this day, this day of reuniting with her past, she wasn’t there. Oh she was up above looking down and so happy to see the meeting take place just as she has been there for every moment, especially these past few years. However, here was her BFF meeting with two adults that she remembered as children.

Instead of already being clued into the adults we had become she still saw as us the children we once were. Of course she knew we had grown and changed but just as any parent does, I am sure she couldn’t help but see the past.

So she had questions and with those questions came two moments that I did not expect. The two moments caught me so off guard, not in a bad way, just a way that made me again have all of these thoughts and questions–more for my circus ring.

The first was when she made the comment that I was just the “same” as I have always been. Now there is nothing wrong with that at all. In fact, I like who I am. It is just that I think as much as I am the same girl I have always been, I have changed. Don’t we all?

And so the plates started spinning and the questions start piling on–what does she see that I don’t? Are the changes that have taken place only surface things, like being a mother and wife? If I am the same, do I still like that person? And on and on and on–you cannot imagine the amount of questions that began to roll through my mind.

So here I am standing trying to visit with this incredibly important person from our past and balancing all of my plates when her next question hits me. “What is it you do?” She was so kind in the way she asked because sadly I am not one who can hide my feelings from my face and when this question was asked I am sure I had a look of “OMG how do I answer this one.” With my pause and of course my horrible look she tried so kindly to say “well other than mothering the children.” I am afraid she thought she had insulted me thinking I must be a stay-at-home mom but ironically the children and my mothering was not even the concern I had. The unsure look on my face was because so much has changed (again the issue with me changing, which I was still questioning in my mind) and was in the middle of changing that I did not know how to answer her question. Here I am making money writing and designing web pages but still maintaining the accounting work that I have been doing my whole adult life. Not to mention the business that my husband and I have started and of course being a mother is a full-time job.

And more plates began to spin….lucky me, I don’t think being part of the circus is part of my life goals. đŸ™‚

I left that meeting joyful of the reuniting but also overwhelmed with questions. So over the course of these past few weeks of excessively time-consuming activities which has only encouraged the out of control thoughts and questions, I think I have finally come up with some answers to those two questions and actually a third answer I did not see coming. It is quiet possible that the meeting from our past has created a few redefining moments for me. Moments that will quiet possibly change my future.

Question number 1, am I the same person I have always been? Yes, I have just grown and improved on myself. Interestingly I lost myself for about ten years (that’s a story for another day) but I found myself again and I do like who I am, was and have become. It should be no surprise that my mother-in-law’s BFF said I was the same, I am–just better, like a nice bottle of wine that has only gotten better with age. Although I can’t speak for anyone other than myself, I would have to say we are all the same as we have always been. We may change temporarily but the real you will always shine through. You may improve upon yourself and add to your character but at your core you are the same–sometimes it just takes someone from your past to point it out.

Question number 2, what is it you do? After high school, through college and into my first marriage I was pointed towards a direction of stability and away from dreams. Dreams can’t pay–right? Wrong. Dreams can pay. The things that you love and are passionate about can make you just as happy financially as they do within your soul, you just have to be willing to go after it. If you want your dreams to come true, then chase them down.

This answer took me a little longer to wrap my mind around than question number one. In fact it has been a series of recent events, starting with the original question. It wasn’t long after when I missed work at my day job for the dreaded jury duty that I realized that if I focused on my dreams of writing I could make as much money doing that as I was with my day job. But as a writer who wants to spend forever writing for other people to pay the bills. While it is rewarding and fulfilling, that is not quite the dream I had.

Then one day I had an enormous amount of hits on my website and they were not coming from the usual places. As any blogger would do, I tracked down the location. Someone, who I did not know, nor did I have any affiliation with was posting Craigslist adds raving about my blog to the world. Not only was my writing being read (which I already knew) but now I had someone “advertising” for me. At first I was a little creeped out by it, but then I realized how awesome it was to be recognized and supported.

Shortly after that I began to be contacted by people and businesses telling me how much they like my style and creativity and asking me to write for them and help them get noticed.

While I was busy questioning myself and who I am, the answers were so clearly right in front of me, that all I have to do is reach out and embrace them. I was just too busy to see it. Until now.

So the answer to question 2 is, I am a writer and a web designer who has an incredible future in front of me. And while I embrace my future, there will be change and until all of that change takes place I will maintain the past I made for myself in accounting. Oh and let’s not forget, my most important job, I am a wife and mother and I take care of my family.

Answer number 3, there was no actual question but there was an answer–In order to keep my mind clear and not cluttered with random thoughts and questions, I need to write. If not by writing for other’s benefit (which you all have proven in amazing numbers that you are out there and read my work) then by writing for myself. It is a part of me and I need the outlet. I am creative by nature and I have to let the inner me shine.

It is always amazing to me when redefining moments come along, but unlike so many people I am not afraid of change and I find these moments to be some of the best in life.


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