Over the holidays, I turned 41 years old. While many of you are are knee deep into the first week of your New Year’s resolutions, I am pondering where I am in my life. Do I have goals for life? What are they? Am I meeting them?
I remember the days when my plan was to be an MD, PhD so I could travel to the rain forest to find cures for disease just like the scientists in Medicine Man. Unfortunately, organic chemistry kicked my butt in university so going to medical school didn’t sound like much fun.
Instead I got my Chemical Engineering degree and went to work. Working with name on a patch wasn’t my passion so I left my job as a process engineer at a polypropylene plant in Lake Charles, LA to work in sales in Austin, TX. There I met my husband, made a ton of friends and started a career that would last almost 15 years and take me to Calgary.
During that time I got married and had my son, Evan. I went back to work after he was born but quit a few years ago. There were a lot of reasons for my departure including being there for Evan through his not-so-easy first few years in school. I will never regret quitting one bit. I think it saved both of us.
Evan is doing an amazing job at school. We found a place for him that gets him and helps him thrive. I’ve also grown my blog as a business. It’s been a rewarding few years but I start wondering what I *should* be doing. How can I make my mark on the world (and really…is that even something that people should aspire to because how many of us TRULY leave a lasting mark on anyone other than our friends and family)? That starts me down the path of considering going back to work.
What would I do, though? Chemical engineering? Kill me now. Writing or marketing? Not something that I can get a job in right now here (honestly, not much is. Calgary is in a huge slump right now). Add into that the fact that I am very lucky that my husband has a great job that gives him lots of vacation time. So taking a job and going back to 2 weeks vacation doesn’t sound great either.
Welcome to my yearly gerbil wheel of “what should I do”. Inevitably, I do all the mental gymnastics and then remind myself to be happy right where I am.
Why is that so hard, though? Just like being happy with our current weight..it’s just not that easy. So instead of New Year’s resolutions, I am again focusing on being content with just being. Being a mom. Being a wife. Being a writer and blogger. Being a sometimes volunteer. Being a friend.
All of those are important to those in my life. And maybe (just maybe) I should worry less about making a mark on the world and remember that the biggest mark I can make is upon those I share a life with. (At least until I convince Dewey to sell everything we own and travel full time…a girl can still dream, right?!)..
How do you make your mark?