Sometimes those moments represent major turning points in your life. Other times, they are mini-moments. They need to be recognized, contemplated, soothed, and then usually you can move on. Usually…
I’m having a confluence of “What now?” moments. Anyone who stepped back and looked at my life over the last 10 years or so would be pretty impressed with the speed at which I’ve been living life.
Mama Wa Wile is now Mama Wa Wile Na Tatu. Jaden and Rowan turned three last Monday. It feels both like the three shortest years and the three longest years of my life. The decision to have a child, the race to get pregnant, the worries and joys of a twin pregnancy, and then the craziness of the early days and the toddler years (which although are not over yet, have certainly changed with the introduction of full sentences) – it all passes through my memory like a giant whirl. The sleep deprivation has resulted in a giant black hole in my brain.
So they are three years old. The worst of the craziness is behind us – at least until they turn 13. So now what?
I’ve been in Tanzania for 8 months. From the first (and only) interview I had for this job (in early December 2005) things started moving quickly. I left my job of 13 years. I negotiated terms for a new job. I traveled out to Tanzania to arrange my life. I ran home to pack it all up. I came back out with toddlers and mother in tow. I was asked to save a project. It is saved. (Well sort of, but although people like to give me credit for that it wasn’t really me.) I went back to the US for 10 days in September to wrap up my old job. I had family and friends visit for safari, beach, etc. I went back to the US for 12 days in December – and it was really like a visit – not going home.
So I’m in Tanzania. I’m not going anywhere for at least another year and a half. So now what?
I’m turning 39 on Wednesday. My youth was mostly fun and harmlessly experimental. My early and mid-career was filled with adventurous travel, exotic locations, an occasional celebrity, and wonderful, wonderful friends. I got degreed. I embraced my 20s, I embraced my 30s. I’ve never felt that age was something that needed to limit me or push me. (Well… perhaps with the exception of my ovaries. But let’s face it, those are shutting down now, too – making the three vials of “just in case” sperm still sitting on ice at the doctor’s office inconsequential.)
So I’ve done a lot, studied a lot, and seen a lot. I’ve developed meaningful adult relationships. I’ve reproduced. I’m 39. So now what?
Those of you that know me well know that I’ve never been good at uncertainty. Since I was a teenager – maybe even before – everything has been well planned, like an army preparing for war. (And not under the leadership of George W. Bush. Rather like one of those more successful WWII generals who I can’t seem to name at the moment.)
But for the first time in my life I honestly can’t tell you what next.
And that is making me uncomfortable.
One of my best friends, David Letiecq, introduced me to the concept of mindfulness several years ago during his journey into Buddhism. He told me that when I was surrounded with too many inputs I should try to sit still and be mindful and that maybe the answer or the next step would come to me from the Universe.
So that’s what I did. I’ve used the opportunities provided by New Years Revelations and down time at home to sit still and be mindful. And I think I actually got a message from “the Universe” addressing the “now what” problem.
The message was…
You just need to fucking chill out.
(BTW, fucking was emphasized - by the Universe - for those of you who don't like it when I curse.)
In other news... I'm still taking your blog suggestions - see the entry below.