Not for everyone, mind you. Some people live extraordinary lives. Jetting off all over the world, exploring far flung places, discovering or inventing something outstanding, selflessly helping others, participating in exhilarating activities. For some, the love and warmth of family life prevents their leaves from becoming a pile of sogginess. That is just as admirable, if not more so! They have so little yet so much in their loving circle. Watching their children sleep and receiving that unconditional love from their brood. Being thankful for what they have and appreciating that even though their four year old insists that he didn’t pour the whole bottle of expensive body lotion down the toilet, their frustration will be short lived, and always replaced with a warm heart. They fret over their child being able to write her name before she starts school and lose sleep over the thought they might not be asked to help build a Lego rocket with the others. They are overcome with pride when their child gets top marks for spelling, or only fumbles their lines in the nativity once. Their Twitter, Facebook and Instagram feeds are full of proud moments in their family lives. They build their future around helping their offspring to be the best that they can possibly be. They plan family holidays and talk of saving for university. They have a future as a family, and one day will look forward to becoming Grandparents and going through the same, though to a slightly lesser extent, all over again.
I don’t have children, nor do I have any real intention of having any. It may happen, it may not, but right now I am not a parent and my future feels a bit like that plastic bag “dancing” in the wind in American Beauty. My present feels like a pile of soggy leaves. No matter how many little sparks you make, it just won’t bloody ignite. I am by no means insinuating that everyone without children feels like this, because I am pretty sure a lot of them are flaming away or even just happy with their lives. Being “just happy” is a great thing. You’re never waiting for something amazing to happen or hoping that your next silly little idea will be the start of great things. I’m just talking about my life. This soggy pile of leaves.
I’m 35, a bit fat and a bit bored. Unmarried, though living with my long term partner and our dog. I’ve never had a purpose in life, and skipped through all 35 years quite happily. I have had some good times and my partner is an amazing person who I would not belittle in any way. Quite the contrary, he feels the same as me. I’ve never found a real career even though I went to uni and graduated with a BA (Hons) in English. I stayed in one job for ten years but it was more my little team of friends that kept me there, not the job itself. I was bloody good at what I did but therein lay the problem. I wasn’t challenged any more and I thought I should leave before I became an arrogant bitch. So, I went self employed. Brilliant idea. Being my own boss is pretty good. But, two years in, and I kind of miss that someone telling me how good I am at what I do. I realise how lame that sounds.
I’ve had so many business ideas that my Moleskine is a mass of scribbles, research and notes. One idea crashing into the next. I’ve bought about ten domain names in the last five years to suit each of these ideas and then let them flutter away as the licence ran out. I even registered my own name as one, on a whim of another “genius idea” that never came to fruition. I spent a lot of time on each of these ideas, designing logos, product pricing, even market research. I was going to open a dog bakery, baking dog treats, not the actual dogs. I was going to run a gift service online with a beautiful Italian name. I was going to start an amateur art website helping unknown artists sell their work. I was going to breed alpaca and live on a ranch. I was going to open a music centre and hold concerts for the local community. I was going to make custom shower curtains (not one of my best ideas), and sell them on Etsy. I was going to be a day trader on the stock market. I was going to become a street magician. I was going to open a kids clothing shop importing Scandinavian products. I was going to become a clown until I realised how competitive the clown industry is. I was going to become a beautician until I remembered I am actually not very good at making myself look half decent, let alone any clients. You see where I am at? You see why this pile of soggy leaves, which incidentally keeps on growing, just won’t bloody light? Not one little flame from all those tiny sparks.
This is where my journey begins. Here, in this blog, with you. I am about to embark on a metamorphosis. I am about to kick that big pile of leaves right over with my slightly scruffy Converse. So please, I need you to prevent this from become another one of those rubbish little sparks. I need you to help me remember to be brave, take risks and follow things through to the end. I have nothing to lose, I really don’t. I would love to know that it is not just me that feels like this. Who knows, you might kick over your own pile of leaves too.
So here’s to changing my life and future, one new experience at a time. As the Latin is written “Audentes Fortuna Iuvat”, or for those of us who don’t speak Latin, Fortune favours the bold!