Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Living life in between

As Jake was graduating from high school and deciding where to go off to college I could tell he was viewing college as something of an awkward limbo between high school and adulthood.  Sort of a waiting period before he could begin his real life.  I advised him not to think of it that way but to realize this moment right now is real life.  Don't wait for life to begin.  Live now!  I guess he took us serious because he traded the awkward years of college life for the awkward 6 years of army life which may well be followed by more awkward college life.  And in the midst of all that awkward in between he is living life, getting married, experiencing the world.  I might even get that grandchild I am hoping to have before I am 50!  No waiting for life to happen in his life.  He is living!

I am reminding myself of that truth today in my own life.  With John in school, downsizing back into a space only slightly larger than we had when we were first married 23 years ago, both of us returning to low paying jobs in order to keep our heads above water, it definitely feels like we are in the awkward limbo of college life before our real life can begin.  Or in our case before we can return to our real life.

But this IS our real life.  At least for today and probably for the next 5 years.  When you go on a long journey you see a lot of different terrain along the way.  On our life journey we are certainly seeing a lot of new scenery right now.  But those changes are what keep the trip interesting.

Sometimes on road trips John and I purposely take the back roads.  Drive through the farm country.  One time on such a trip we came across a sunflower farm.  Yes, acres and acres of blooming sunflowers. Conceptually I guess they have to exist but I had just never thought about what the farm where those bags of sunflower seeds come from might look like. Incredibly beautiful. That farm wasn't our destination just a happy memory on the journey between point A and point B. If we thought of the drive as a limbo between events and rushed down the interstate instead of viewing it as part of the trip, we would have missed it completely.

As hard as life is right now in this weird transition we are in, I am glad we are in it.  Still excited about where we are going and who we are re-inventing ourselves to be. I could choose to think of the next 5 years as some sort of limbo.  Not acknowledge this downsize as a real part of our life.  But real life happens in between. Isabelle will be finishing middle school in 5 years!  I don't want to miss that.  I will have had more working years on this side of homemaking than I had before children.  I can think of so many things that could happen over the next 5 years while we are in limbo and there are so many other things that will happen that I can't even imagine.

We are driving those back roads on our journey toward PA and watching for that field of sunflowers.

Are you rushing down the interstate or enjoying the journey through life?

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