I don’t know what I want to be when I grow up.
Since I will soon be 40, this might be a good time to figure it out.
I’ve been in my current field for several years now. It’s not what I set out to do – I sort of fell into it through another field that WAS more closely related to what I set out to do. In spite of that, I’ve always been happy enough doing it. I often feel that I’m not very good at it, and it certainly has its other frustrations, but it’s always been okay.
Except that I didn’t think I’d still be doing it at 40.
And yet here I am, still doing it and still trying to figure out if it’s what I WANT to do or not.
Maybe I’m being too hard on myself. I mean, for a long time I didn’t think I was going to have a career. I thought I was going to marry Dr. Wonderful and stay home and have babies. So by the time I figured out that wasn’t going to be an option, I was a little behind the curve in terms of planning for the future. Considering how many years I wasted on my little happily-ever-after fantasy, I guess I’m not doing too bad.
But still. Forty looms out there. I really thought I would have it more together by the time I hit that date on the calendar.
I’m happy being a mom, and blogging has filled a real void by giving me a writing outlet. (And BTW, I’m grateful to all of you who offered encouraging words when I was thinking that maybe blogging wasn’t for me.) Should I just be grateful that I have a fulfilling family life and a great hobby and leave it at that? Is that what most people do? Do I have to be like most people?
Several of you have suggested that I write a book (*giggle*). I’m flattered by the suggestion, and would love to oblige, but I have no idea how to go about something like that. What would I write about? Who would read it? How would I go about getting it published? Even if I succeeded, would it be the beginning of a new career or just another time-sucker I’d have to squeeze into my life somewhere?
I’d love to be Julie Powell from Julie & Julia and turn my blog into an overnight success that spawns two books and a movie starring Meryl Streep. I would love to be J.K. Rowling and suddenly be thunderstruck with the idea for not one but SEVEN books that outsell all the books in the history of books.
But that doesn’t happen. Not to real people.
So someone please tell me what DOES happen – do I wake up one day with a newfound realization of my life’s purpose? Do I suddenly gain a crapload of time and energy and go back to school? If so, to study what? Do I win the lottery and suddenly have money to do whatever I want, including publishing my own damn book?
I don’t know. I just know that this isn’t where I expected to be two months before my fortieth birthday.
If you find that map I dropped, let me know, will ya?