So, I was having lunch with an old client/friend of mine this week. It was great. We reconnected over sushi and wine. Yummy food, yummy wine, yummy company. We hadn’t seen each other in over three years we calculated, because the last time she saw me, she said I was pregnant. Yeesh for her! But, you know those friends that you don’t see often, and the minute you lay eyes on each other, you pick right back up where you left off? She’s that kinda friend.
We started yapping away. Neither one of us could get a word in edge-wise. She filled me in on her relationship with her boyfriend that had started out completely platonic. She told me of her epiphany around turning 45 this year, and that has she has decided she to sell her condo in the city, and build a house of her own on a patch of land away from the hustle and bustle, amidst her herb and vegetable garden. And that she had made the big decision not to move in with her boyfriend in the end. She is used to her own space, and doesn’t not want to “wreck” a good thing. He has kids of his own from a previous marriage, she is a graphic designer and enjoys her quiet.
I filled her in on my life. I told her of my decision to sell my business three years ago to be home with the boys. The Blog. My hubby. Life in general. Picket fences, and settling into married life and mommyhood.
Both wonderful. Both polar opposites.
And while I was listening to her tell me about her moving out of the city, to build her house, to live happily alone with her boyfriend nearby, one thing kept resonating for me. Not everyone wants the picket fence, the dog, the kids on the front yard, the bikes, and the handy husband. That’s just not every woman’s dream. And who’s the say that’s wrong? Not all women dream of picket fences.
And as she was recalling one particular Friday afternoon, last minute, that she decided to pick up and head out of town for the weekend, something clicked for me. Wow, imagine. No carpools to line up. No emergency numbers to leave. No grandparents to sleep over. No babysitters. Nothing to line up. Nothing to plan or prepare. Just wake up, decide you feel like going to Africa, and you’re one with the tigers faster than you can say “roar.”
Now, I’m not saying I would ever want to give up my comfortable suburbia life for anything. I live for my family. I live for my kids. I live for my husband. But something just felt free. I can’t quite explain it. It was like the world was her oyster. It was like she was Elizabeth of Eat, Pray, Love.
So, I ask you ladies, when your little girls sit and dream of what they want to be when they grow up, does it have to be of motherhood and husbands and picket fences? Sometimes taking the road less traveled can be just as sunny. We don’t all have to conform. And that makes all the difference.
PS – Read yesterday Oprah is ending her talk show. I’m uh… um…. SOBBING! Snif snif.