When I was 25...

I was talking to a friend the other day about whether where we are now is where we thought we'd be; whether, when we were 25 years old, this what we imagined our lives would look like 15 years later. I think the answer is inevitably, no. No this is not where I thought I'd be, no this is not what I thought my life would look like, and no, this is not what I thought I would look like or be like when I cast my eyes into the future.

Or is it? When I was 25 and a recent law grad, I assumed I'd be an attorney and I am. I assumed I'd be forceful and zealous but also compassionate and kind. I assumed I'd be driven to do justice balanced by a strong sense of realism. I have been through too much in my life to live with my head in the clouds, but that doesn't mean I don't work toward lofty goals. And that's where I am. There is still much to do but I feel like I'm well on my way.

And what about my personal life? Does it look at all like I thought it would? I always thought I'd have children, and I do. I always imagined I would be a mother, that I would struggle with work and home life, and I do, but I am grateful for the challenge. On an almost-daily basis I wonder how it will all get done. I wonder if the mistakes I made during the day will do lasting damage - school parties missed, meals made by drive-through and not by stove, goodnight kisses rushed to get one more hour of work in at night; or will my children, when they get older, realize I just did the best I could for today. I was not perfect but I was perfect in my intention to do what I could in whatever moment I was in.

And my quest for love- that quest that began in the cloakroom of my Kindergarten class with a kiss on the cheek of a boy I had a crush on- where has that lead me? I struggle with this. I struggle with the understanding that my quest still remains, still goes on, still exists. But does the fact that I am single (again) mean that I have not been successful on my path for true love? I have met and fallen in love many times, had my heart broken, picked myself up and started all over again. I have found that one of things I like most about myself is my hope - my never-ending belief that love can be found, that love remains to be discovered, that love remains in my future. Would I give up the times I fell in love just because, in the end, it was not forever? Never. I learned from all the love I gave and received in return. I learned that I have the capacity to continue to open my heart, that even when it breaks, it will heal again. Differently. Changed. But still alive. Still hopeful. Still searching.

My life may not be what I had imagined. But is it really ever? The path we travel is one we can plan for but it rarely ever works the way we thought. It doesn't make it wrong or bad, it just makes it different. And we along with it.

After all, this is the life.
- a


  1. "I was not perfect, but I was perfect in my intention to do what I could in whatever moment I was in." What a quote! This sums up motherhood. My kids are 37 & 40 and still remind me that I made them share a Happy Meal:) I used to think asking others for forgiveness would ease my burdens, but we must forgive ourselves first.


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