This was originally title “On the Eve of My 46th birthday,” but I had to give up after several hours of interruptions from a small child demanding food and small dog intent on peeing all over my office. Not things I expected to be happening in my mid-40s, but things are generally nothing like what I might have thought they’d be when I was in my 20s.
I remember saying back then, that when I’m 40 I want a convertible Porsche. But instead, right before I turned 40, I had a baby and my life took a permanent detour into mom town. So when the chance for a new car came, I went with a nice sensible crossover SUV that would easily fit a car seat and the extra stuff associated with children. I actually love my car and have no desire for a tiny sports car at this point in my life. Maybe I’ll revisit that at 60. Because if it’s one thing I have learned in my 46 years of life, it’s that you never know what life is going to throw at you, and you have to learn to just roll with the punches and embrace the life you are living at the moment.
Happy 46th Birthday
I have many things to be be happy about on my birthday. I have a wonderful husband, who I’ve been married to for almost 20 years. And he’s actually here on my birthday, which is always a big deal since I have the most impressive stack of “Sorry I couldn’t be there” cards from my many years as a military wife. He almost missed this one, but things shifted at the last minute and he didn’t run off to try and save the world one more time.
I have a 6-year-old son, who’s currently camped out under my desk playing Minecraft. I filled many blog posts during his toddler years, when sometimes writing about my frustration was the only thing keeping me from going absolutely insane. Things got better once he started pre-school and then pretty wonderful once school started, even though he started kindergarten during a pandemic.
And while we’re on the topic of pandemics, Whoa! Didn’t see that one coming! In my first 20 years of life, there was no “War on Terror,” no COVID-19 virus and pretty much no Internet for that matter. The biggest things I remember happening are the Berlin Wall coming down and Hands Across America. Growing up in the late ’70s to early ’90s was pretty darn good.
Embracing My Self, Whoever I Am Now
I went through a major identify crisis after I had my son and closed the costume business I had run for over a decade. I had to figure out who I was after becoming a mom, and how that worked with the person I always had been. I could no longer go out to two or three costume events a week until the wee hours of the morning. I had to get up early and take care of a small human. Not to mention just arranging a night out costs about $50 extra and major advance scheduling. The thing I had been doing for many years just didn’t have a place in my life anymore. But I missed the costuming aspect. So eventually I found a way to bring the costuming back in with Instagram and TikTok (you can find me everywhere as @sewgeekmama) and started feeling a bit more like myself. Not necessarily my old self, but my new self that takes into account all my past selves and combines them to create the current me.
I got a couple curve balls thrown my way this past year, besides the pandemic which was a big thing for everyone. I had a very hard time dealing with the sudden death of my best friend, and this is my first birthday without her. I cried just typing that and its frustrating to still be so deeply affected by it. My husband retired from the Army after 31 years, so this is the first time we’ve been together nearly every single day in very long time. It’s taking some getting used to having very little alone time, as I’ve gotten used to being alone over the years and actually really enjoy my quiet time. Since I had my son, the main thing I ask for on holidays is for everyone to just leave me a alone for a bit so I can have some peace and quiet.
This Is 40-ish
So here I am, enjoying my peace and quiet this morning. Enjoying being able to hear my own thoughts without constant interruption. The kid is off to school and the husband has taken the puppy to the vet. And I have finally been able to finish my first blog post in 10 days. Our house has been in a state of chaos since we adopted a puppy a couple weeks ago. But it’s all good. Life is good. I am happy where I am and where my life choices have taken me. I feel things shifting to a new era of life with my husband’s retirement and son getting a bit older. And I look forward to more birthdays amid the chaos. Sometimes it takes a bit of solitude to step back and appreciate all that you have.