Yesterday I had this recurring thought that hasn’t left me yet. The thought was this:
“I have to form my own life.”
On the one hand it’s one of the best feelings in the world.
Yet at the same time it’s one of the worst.
Allow me to explain.
As a kid most of us had our lives laid out for us. All the way up through probably our mid to late 20s life was pretty much “scheduled.”
As a child it’s “go to school, come home, do homework, play with friends, pretty much go wherever our parents go and schedule us to go.”
We have options, sure, but it’s a relatively “straight up and busy formula.”
Even in college there’s always “stuff to do.” You go to class most of the day, maybe you’ll workout, and the rest of college life is either working or hanging out with friends.
But one of the nice things in college is that even when you’re doing nothing you’re doing something because you’re with friends.
Early 20s? Same deal. You work all day, workout, do whatever, then party with friends.
There’s a continuity to all of this.
Granted I know I’m simplifying things.
But when family life hits, your “routine” is all but gone.
And you get used to parenting. You get used to the unpredictability. You form a new life.
But then at some point when the kids are old enough you discover something scary.
All the routines, friends, things you could rely on to keep “busy” are gone. All of a sudden life isn’t laid out for you.
YOU yourself have to make it.
For some people it’s a liberating feeling and for others it’s frightening and daunting.
I’m always on both sides of that fence.
It’s great to decide what your life can be but it’s also damned hard and requires work as well as responsibility.
I struggle with this dichotomy every single day.
And if any of you out there feel this way, you’re not alone.
So how do you fix it? That’s for another article.