In a conversation with a friend/fellow teacher at work today, she confessed that she was getting out at the end of this year. During the conversation she seemed to really want to explain herself and her choice - almost like trying to defend something. When she finally said, "You know, it doesn't really matter what anyone else thinks because it's not anyone else's life. It's my life!" I totally was with her.
In that moment, I realized again that we all have to make choices for ourselves. Sharing, not sharing. Adoption, surrogacy, fertility treatments, being a family of 2...or 1. Working, staying home, going back to school. Outgoing, introvert, lawyer, doctor, teacher, landscaper. None of it makes a hill o'beans difference so long as we're sure our own path is the right one for us.
As my friend sat there talking, I remembered that I used to be one of those people who would've questioned her decision and asked to hear the justification. But today as I sat there listening for a few minutes, all I felt necessary to say was that it was okay. I just want her to be happy and it doesn't matter what anyone else thinks about it. If this is what she needs to do, then it's okay with me, no questions or explanation necessary. More than she knows, I get what she said.
So, while it's true that I may never be the laid-back, quiet (Harris laughs at this one!), gentle, go with the flow, trust-that-everything-will-be-alright person I aspire to become, I gotta say this process/journey has helped me to unlock my mind to other possibilities I'd never considered. As much as this situation sucks, I'm grateful for who I've started to become. [Insert caterpillar to butterfly metaphor HERE]
In that spirit, thanks to everyone who's written me on the blog or by email, met Harris & I for lunch (Duane & Bernadette), come over to have a family dinner in a place where we were totally alone (Avey & Mia, Aleksandra, Rich, Helena, Neveah, Milena), or made us feel at home with sweet tea on the other side of the world (Chad & Doug). I am sincerely grateful for the ways you've all changed me.
BTW, Harris is still laughing at the thought of me being quiet and laid-back. Probably wouldn't help to illustrate the new me if I yelled down the hall for him to put a sock in it, huh???