Exposed Brick and Mental Mordor

‘Tis the season and my email inbox has filled with eVites. One of them was to a sort of Open House party thrown by a whole group of young, socially conscious entrepreneurs from various walks of life. These people all have office space in a very cool building graced with lots of exposed brick, natural wood floors, high ceilings and progressive politics. I was probably the oldest person in the building – all of the business folks were in their 20s and 30s.

Walking through the hallways hung with contemporary and very hip artwork I became overwhelmed with the sense that I’d lived the wrong life – like I had throughly missed the boat and that my life was just a dried husk, as thrilling as white noise. How I came to marry a knee-jerk, conservative, anti-intellectual and hunker down to the utterly quotidian life we led together escapes me – but only for a moment. Then I remember that I was uninspired as a young woman having spent most of my inner resources just convincing myself I deserved a spot in the circle of life.

I had my youngest with me and it was so great to end up inadvertently exposing her to the zeitgeist of that environment. I was giddy with the idea that she and her siblings might live a more edgy, more interesting, more purposed life than the one I stumbled into. We talked about it on the way home and I told her that whatever she did she needed to find her passion and figure out how to survive while engaging in something she loved.

As I lay in bed that night I dove in to that feeling of absence – that sense of having missed something. I tried to think about what might have been, of what I might have done differently if, on the night before I was supposed to move in with my fiance I had followed through on our fight and changed my mind. I almost broke up with the guy because I could see, for split second, that it would never work. But then I buckled, picked up the engagement ring I had tossed across the room and calmed down. I did move in with him and I did marry him and I did quit graduate school and get a job and I did have 3 kids with him. Three perfect, spectacular, amazing kids. Imagining that I had taken any other turn in life is like dreaming I am falling over a cliff. People never hit the bottom in those dreams because if you hit the bottom you die. You wake up, instead. I woke up from the ‘what if’ scenario and I smiled. I didn’t miss anything – I done good.

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3 Responses to Exposed Brick and Mental Mordor

  1. jeanne says:

    Ok, you are exempt from that idiot meme I tagged you with. you just disclosed plenty! Man, can i relate. i am just now realizing that i can have the life i want (sans money) right now. Can’t help regretting some of the past, but it was what it was, and using new age psychobabble, i probably needed to learn its lessons. whatever. here we are. we have GREAT kids! (kid for me) No way can we regret a marriage (entirely) when that’s what we produced.btw, i work with all 30s and 20s, and i LOVE LOVE LOVE them! that’s why i can’t date anymore. people my age (strike that… let’s say, “most” men my age are, if single, boring, if fascinating: married, or gay.) It’s a problem.

  2. 21st Century Mom says:

    Oh no way, Jeanne. I’m writing up my 5 facts because it is nice to have the topic all picked out and I’ve been thinking about it.Thanks for the tip on why men my age bore me. I might just have to incorporate that sentiment into my personals ad (stay tuned for fact #3).

  3. jeanne says:

    oooh now i can’t wait!!! for real!!

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