I was texting back and forth yesterday morning with a trusted confidant and we began reminiscing about the summer of 2012. For a number of varying reasons we cheerfully remember that time, most importantly because it was the very first time I’d lived alone at the cottage & commuted to work since its purchase in 1999. In hindsight, I guess you can say that was the summer I officially learned to sew; simply because that summer was the first time I'd ever invested in mending... me.
It’s not like I was broken per se, more to the point that when the twins left for post secondary school in September of 2011, I felt a sense that my life was unraveling. The point being, when the nest empties I don’t think anyone can truly get to know themselves (what they want, nor what they need as a newly independent person) until they make the effort to try and figure it out. Midlife gave me the one thing I’d never had the luxury of before: time.
All these years later, I realize that nothing truly prepares us for midlife. And when that phase crept into my peripheral vision, I honestly would not have classified myself as unhappy. More elated, embracing a feeling of euphoria because I no longer had to focus on everyone around me, and could finally get to focus on my own needs.
It was in that moment, that I looked in the mirror and realized that I had no idea who I was. I remember my immediate assessment on the outside was that I was overweight, yet on the inside I realized I was resentful for being underappreciated. That very harsh personal reality hit like a ton of bricks… and trust me, I did NOT see it coming.
So, as things in my life began to quickly unfurl, I took matters into my own hands. I don’t know what I would have done without my very best girlfriend. She was a lifesaver. She had already survived something similar, so she was my beacon. Thank goodness I didn’t have to pay CJ for all of her hugs and words of support, I would have gone bankrupt!
|The summer of 2012. Puddin' was just a wee pup and Dot got to spend extra paddle time alone with me!|
TAKEN: JUNE, JULY & AUGUST 2012
The point of my post is that I don't dwell on that time and I have no regrets. I made some big personal moves, learned how to live my life on my terms, and over the eighteen months that followed suffered gut-wrenching heartache I don’t wish on anyone else to have to experience. At the end of the day, I came out the other side more vibrant and exceedingly more comfortable with the skin I’m in. If you’re in my life it’s because you deserve to be, if you’re not, you ultimately know & understand why.
Owning who you are is a lot harder than you may think. For years I just folded like a lawn chair until I would explode with frustration. Now a days, I wholeheartedly own what I want and openly communicate where I’m going: with no regrets.
A wise man once told me that life experiences are the threads that all have a part in our final blanket, which is very true. The other side of that coin is, who says you can’t teach an old dog new tricks?
I taught myself to sew a beautiful midlife blanket six years ago... Didn’t I ?!