Growth and Contentment

Time and time again I have been told I want more, to do more, to be better and I happen to pressure the people around me to get what I believe I should have. I was told to be content with what I have and who I am; which isn’t completely a fair statement if you knew my entire story. It is true that I want things out of the typical norm? Yes, one hundred percent, now I do. Am I guiltless of pressuring certain people over the period of my life unintentionally? No, not even close. Have I learned from past errors and paths that I decided to take? Oh my gosh, yes! You see I have never forced someone to be in my presence or to like how I am living my life. In fact it is the opposite, I encourage them to do what is best for them. So if they feel pressure from me to be someone they’re not just to fit in that’s awful. Am I peer pressuring others to follow me in all my ways? Absolutely not, I actually really enjoy going with one single person and meeting a bunch of strangers along the way. Learning about them and from them. It is honestly one of my favorite things which is where I differ from some of those I know best; people get so comfortable and complacent in life they don’t like to meet new people or grow their circle. They don’t trust others if they didn’t meet in Elementary School; with that mentality growth is slim.
You see the truth about me is I have been very content in life, with myself, my choices and then there was a turning point for me; at that time I made a decision for myself to break the mold, that’s what I needed.To enhance my life by actually living, doing and experiencing and to become more cultured than I had ever even dreamed to be and did not want to follow suit with explanations and apologies. That turning point happened when my son was just over two years old, my whole view on things changed at that time and it changed because of him. I feel like to be content is perceived in different ways. I am actually very content with my day to day life and it is something I pray in gratitude for everyday. At the same time I know things don’t just change for you. If you have put in zero effort into something, it will in fact stay the same. So i guess even though I am content right now, I know I don’t want to live this same life from twenty-eight all the way to eighty-eight. I am going to need change over the years as I evolve as a human on this earth and a mother. Maybe some of those closest to me think i started wanting change too early in life and can be looked at as if I was not content or complacent. I have been on this journey for almost four years now; even if it is the ever so slightest I am changing my mind, outlooks and feelings so regularly. I like to think of it as expanding and being open to so many different theories. I want to be better than I was before, I want my AppleJax to be able to look back and really be proud of the mother I was, someone that inspired him. To be more than just a mom at home to him but actually a cultured human in society that he can respect as more than just a mother. I never felt it was necessary to justify why you choose the things you do for yourself especially to the people that you choose to share your stories with.
I was heading back from Santorini almost two years ago and there was a lady I was placed next to on the plane. She was a chatty Australian who had two boys in their twenties and she was boasting how proud she was of them for their degrees or professional sports achievements and it was such pleasure to talk to her and share stories about our boys. At the time Jax was three and he was starting preschool and hitting different milestones and at a point in the conversation she applauded me for taking time away, to learn new things and broaden my life, to recharge myself so I can give my best to him which was ironic because days before this conversation I had started to truly regret that trip and felt like a mother who wasn’t doing enough, thought I was doing everything all wrong; these words from a total stranger really hit me deep she went on to tell me how she only ever cooked, cleaned and helped her boys with homework; you know a typical stay at home mom which for the record I applaud any parent that can do that. It takes so much effort and I would go insane if I had to do that all day every day. I love leaving and having to work, it keeps me on the saner side. But she was telling me how much she always wanted to work, to go around the world and travel, to meet new interesting people but “it wasn’t in the cards for me” she said. As she spoke it was like a mirror almost; like an older me talking to twenty-five year old me. We thought so much alike and her reasons she wanted all those things was as if she pulled them out of my head “so my boys would respect me as a mother and a human not just their mom”. I will forever remember this conversation for it reignites my dwindling flame at times.
I continue to make things happen for myself, I want so many things from life which I am well aware all those things do not happen at once or right now but I am enjoying the whole process and I live day to day with intention, a smile, and a casual daydream here and there to inspire my next idea. No matter what I do people always have more questions or “concerns” is how they put it.
Some selected humans have questioned “How are you able to do that? How are you taking time away from your son as a single parent? You’re a server, none of what you’re doing makes sense!” and my favorite is “Can your mama pay for me too?” as if I don’t actually provide these things I do for myself which is slightly offensive but I’m not wasting my energy to brew on that. There have been so many statements thrown towards me and some of the questions I even entertained and considered to respond with a smug remark but I chose to answer all the statements with “I am blessed” or just a simple smiley face which yes I know is a little passive but not everything requires justification especially when it is almost demanded from you. I truly feel unless you want to explain and prove something to others, just don’t. But this is my opportunity, with out a demand in sight to answer some of those questions. How am I able to do all of this? Well I don’t drink, I don’t smoke, I do not spend a fortune at the bars or going to Busch Gardens all the time. I search for interesting and fun things that are cost friendly; I actually budget travel into my finances because it is a priority for me. I also travel cheap, I’m sure some of my trips seem outlandish or expensive but I am very diligent on how I travel to keep costs low, without hindering myself from a good time. How am I leaving my son? Well thats easy and I do not feel guilty one bit about it. Yes I am a single mother with full physical custody but his dad does have visitation and requested for two weeks for “vacation time” when we went to court. So Jax is with his dad getting to have an extended visit with his other family and I get this time alone solely because his dad wanted it with him. So no I am not pawning him off with anyone to be selfish for myself and no I am not abandoning my motherly duties just to have fun.
My oldest friend thinks her words are the most valued and sure they are up there with my grandmas but I am living for me. We each live for ourselves and our ultimate goal should be to invest in yourself however you choose and at the end of the day like who you are and what you’re doing for YOURSELF. It will always be a journey, different things come at different times and it’s totally up to oneself when they decide they don’t want to push any further. It is only natural humans get discouraged because of others “concerns” or to loose the fire that lit them up initially; maybe at that moment you reevaluate and see whats your next move, sometimes if you think about things as the next couple steps it helps you from loosing that flame.
I’m soon to land in Hawaii, stay tuned.