Milestones

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

sweetness

A week ago, Declan started smiling. It was right around that magical 6 week window when the baby books try to assure you that, if you had a crappy baby, things are gonna look up, and if you got lucky with a sleeper, get ready, because their lower digestive tract is about to rock everybody's world.

But at least they are smiling about it.

The milestones are coming fast and furious. The shockingly fast neck control, the five hour sleep stretches at night ( I KNOW, right? The only reason I'm letting this become public knowledge is that it took about a year for Harlow to start sleeping like that. I earned this one, people.) I leave the pediatrician's office clutching his little list of milestones, his whole amazing life ahead of him, and I can't help but wonder.

Where's my list?

You fall in love. You get your driver's license. You graduate. You fall in love again. You can legally rent a car. You get married. You have a baby. You maybe have another baby. You rapidly approach 40.

And then...what? You... wait for those kids to fall in love. Graduate. Get married. Yo turn 40. Maybe become a grandma?

You hit all the big milestones celebrated by movies and literature and pop songs, checked off all the to-do's. You finish making those babies and then what? What's left for YOU?

Where is my checklist for what's next?

This is a strange purgatory, the place on the other side of having children. I'm not sure if I ever let my brain cast out a line far beyond this point. Just like in my deluded thinking that I would never go past my due date, I just always assumed that at this point in my life, I wouldn't have to be figuring out what's next. I would be well on my way...to wherever that is.

Perhaps this IS the next milestone. I have ideas of where I'd like to be. I'm daunted by the work it's going to take to get there, but I certainly don't want to be here 10 years later, blogging about why the grand plans I had for my life are now a cautionary tale of what happens when you don't fight for your dreams.

So, for posterity, here is my current checklist:

1. Finish my novel
2. Finish my graphic novel
3. Film my short.
4. Sell a screenplay
5. launch my boudoir business
6. Make enough money so that family vacations become the norm. I want my children to grow up with the ability to fall in love with travel the way I did.

Baby's asleep for at least 20 more minutes. Time to get to work on 1 or 2.

What's on your checklist?

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