Yay, it’s Friday. The beginning of my liver’s work week and the end of mine.
Oh wait. No. Nope. Not true.
I work every day.
I also, however, make room to play, somehow. Lately, not enough, actually, but I’m fixing that again, stat.
And, while the balance might not be what it was three months ago, it’s still pretty fucking awesome to be in this place at this time in the story of me.
Sometimes I look at my life now, as compared to my old life, and I just can’t stop shaking my head. I can’t hardly believe what a small domestic and reserved life I lived. I am so surprised to recognize that I spent all that time trying to be something I’m just not.
I can barely even recognize that version of myself.
So much smaller. So many boxes. So many walls. So much ego.
So much fear.
But now, I humbly, gratefully, and fully acknowledge how very little I actually know and how very very much I have left yet ahead of me.
My life is just so.much.better now. All of it.
How? Why? I get asked that question often, actually. And the answer is, partially, becuase I got out of my comfort zone. I said yes to possiblility and no to limitations. I refused to settle for less than extraordinary.
Extraordinary doesn’t look like million dollar contracts and the front covers of magazines. Extraordinary doesn’t mean watching the show from the company box. And it doesn’t mean a full bank account, a retirement fund, and a 504 plan.
It looks like having an attitude of gratitude. It looks like some injury. It looks like living as the best version of yourself.
Extraordinary, to me, is finding greatness in every day.
Little moments, seemingly commonplace to many, still light me up inside. Walking my kids two blocks to school in the morning. Mimosas in Midtown for Sunday brunch with my girlfriends. Last minute trips to San Francisco. Meeting a client in the middle of the day in a little cafe tucked between a bike shop and a creperie.
Using uber. Resale clothing boutiques that sell Anthropolgie. Family style seating at a Farm-to-Table restaurant in Tahoe. Working, beachside, on a Tuesday afternoon. Hamburgers at neighborhood diners. Locally roasted beans at the coffee co-op. Block parties.
Concerts in the park.
Food truck events. Music festivals. Second Saturday art shows. Farmer’s Markets. Themed pub crawls. Yoga studios. Juice bars. Museums. Evening bike rides through the Fabulous Forties. Rain walks and midnight moonlit strolls. Baseball games. Haircuts for my kids at Jimmy’s Barber Garage. 150 year old churches next to glass high rises.
For most urban dwellers my age, this is normal. For me, this is still fairly novel. And the fact that I can share this all with my children and my friends just blows my mind.
I catch myself though, starting to take it for granted. It’s becoming commonplace for me, which is, in an of itself, almost unreal.
My new normal is what I used to watch others do, and I truly believed I couldn’t have it.
But I can. I did. I do.
Consider, for example, this comparison.Five years ago a fall Saturday would have consisted of some version or combination of the following: a run pushing a double stroller with two whining kids, a breakfast that took an hour to make, three minutes to eat, and thirty to clean, four loads of laundry, two hours of housecleaning (just for the bottom story), lunch from Costco while we shopped, an hour or so working in my classroom (unpaid), some pumpkin something-or-other outing, craft, or double-feature, a failed attempt at naptime, three time-outs while I tried to cook dinner, an hour getting the kids ready for bed, and then ending my night on the couch with a cup of tea and four hours of DVR’d shows while my husband, who had been gone since 6am and come home after the kids were asleep, played video games in the dark in another room.
Ew. Bluck. Shake that off.
Now consider my Saturday two weeks ago:Breakfast was fast, healthy and good. I took the kids with me while I taught yoga on a farm about 15 miles away, then came home and we walked seven blocks to the public library to make some pirate hats and eye patches. Argh. Next up, a free 2+ mile scavenger hunt wearing said urban pirate attire around the city looking for clues left by the librarian. This was followed by coffee and lunch at a hipster cafe while I planned an African Yoga Project fundraising event with my friend and project partner. From there, we went straight to a costume exchange party at a neighbors house. And then, just to make the day even more awesome, the kids went to a sleepover with their besties and I zipped off to a black tie cocktail party to celebrate a friends 40th Birthday.
That was all in one day. And, with the exclusion of the rural(ish) yoga, it all occured within 20 blocks of my house.
I cannot possibly feel any more lucky to live here and now than I do right at this moment. For real.
I have found a way to enjoy every bit of getting to know myself, this world, and the people in it that I can. And I’m still not done. There is so much more to discover. So many more opportunities left. The momentum just keeps growing.
My life keeps expanding because I continue to allow it to do so.
It is unlikely this will be my home forever. Things change. My work and events in my life are likely to take me to new places, and probably soon.
It’s going to be amazing, every single bit.
Along the way, I hope I never stop being in awe of, and in love with, this life, this gift from the universe.
Everything you want is already yours. You can have it. You can do it. It can be your life. If you want it to be.
Stop waiting for Friday. Go. Live. Explore. Be. Grow.