The following are the ramblings of a mind that has nothing to do over approximately 12 hours in car over the course of two days but think. Enjoy.
This past weekend I had the opportunity to go to one of my best friend’s wedding. This meant a road trip from Albuquerque, NM back to somewhere at least close to my old stomping ground- Lubbock, TX. Those of you close to me know that I made the decision to move Cameron and me from my hometown of Lovington, NM to Albuquerque in an attempt to better our lives. I do not make it back home very often, so this was a nice little trip back to familiar territory.
I thought that the wedding was simple and beautiful. The weather made an attempt to crash the party, but thankfully it waited until after the ceremony when everyone was safely inside to start storming. I had never seen my friend look so happy and beautiful and I was glad to just be there and be a part of it. Going to weddings stag is always tough- having had a failed engagement in the past and no successful relationship since it seems to drudge up a lot of lonely, empty feelings that are hard to express. On one hand, you are very happy for the married couple and it’s so much fun to get to dance and have a good time with friends, but then there’s the slow song and all the couples pair off and you’re left sitting at a table alone… This is when I envy my single friends that have completely embraced their lives on their own and don’t ever seem to be bothered by being alone. Most days, I’m ok with it. Others, it drives me crazy.
The irony of it was the wedding coincided with my 26th birthday- further solidifying that I will never forget her anniversary and she will never forget my birthday. Birthdays are usually not a big deal in my book- I haven’t cared about a birthday since I turned 21 and could legally buy beer (you know, priorities). This one was different. Something about moving past the 25 mark made me more conscious of my age. I’m sure this will only get worse as I get older, but it was surprising to me all the same. I know all my older readers are rolling their eyes at me right now, so I will stop belly-aching about getting older. I have been reflecting a lot on what has gotten me to where I am today- which is more the point that I have been trying to get to in all this rambling.
Everyone has an idea of what their lives are going to be when they “grow up”, I was no different. Some of the dreams that I had did come true. I did become a teacher (something I knew I was meant for as a high school freshman). I did graduate with my Bachelor’s degree from NMSU and am well on my way to my Master’s. However, there are quite a few aspects of my life that did not turn out the way I thought they would. I did not plan on getting pregnant at 19. I did not plan on the father of that child making the choices that he did. Never in my wildest dreams did I think I would be going back to school with newborn in tow and have to raise a baby completely alone while trying to survive the madness that is college. I did not plan on having to move back in with my parents with my child. I never thought I would pick up and move across the state to a new city where I have no family and very little support. Long gone are my dreams of having the white picket-fence life with my husband and kids and no complications. Such a naïve cliché that everyone dreams of when they’re young and know nothing about how life really works. In the words of one of the wisest characters I’ve every encountered:
“It does not do well to dwell on dreams and forget to live”.
– Albus Dumbledore
For those of you that caught the Harry Potter reference- kudos! The truth of the matter is life is meant to be messy and complicated and wonderful. Sure, my situation isn’t exactly ideal and what I wanted for myself. I’ve made choices, some good and some definitely bad, that have shaped this world that I live in. I could sit here all day and feel sorry for myself for the bad outcomes I’ve had to live with- some a product of choices other than mine- but what good would that do? There is so much beauty that has risen from the ashes that is to be appreciated. I could cry about all of the plans I made that wound up being scrapped because of the situations I’ve had to deal with, but there is no point. Sometimes one has to let go of the dreams that never came to fruition in order to treasure the life that we have. I’m sure everyone can relate to making choices and hoping for the best, even if they are terrified of failing. I never did well with not having control of the outcome, the unknown is scary and makes me anxious. Falling on my face is not something I enjoy and not an experience I would like to relive. However, it is those failures that have made me the woman that I am today. I have found strength that I never knew possible. As a teacher, I am always telling my students to stop being afraid of failure and embrace it- for it is then that they will truly grow, a piece of advice I am finally following. I hope that others that read this will be able to do the same.
Thanks for reading,