This one is for my ego.
I'm a Gemini. Not just by birth date designation. I am the poster child for the sign. At least in terms of their split-personality characteristics. I'm not big on making decisions. Not because I don't value decisiveness, because I most certainly do. It is the only way to accomplish anything meaningful, and is the backbone of being a tenacious, driven, successful individual. Lord knows I am emphatically supportive of following dreams, and the commitment and hard-edged decision-making it takes to achieve them. I'm just not that great at it. Well, half of me is. Half of me is excellent at doing the hard work and calculating the risks and all that. The other half is another story.
The problem is not a lack of will, or dedication, and certainly not passion. I have deep springs of fire in me that shock me daily. They are the source of so many of the ideas and projects and paths I have moved forward with in life that I am proud of. The problem is that I have two voices in my head that are constantly at war, arguing about the merits of this and that, viewing things at every possible angle. And, in general, their viewpoints are always positive. "But have you thought of this?! Wouldn't that be just amazing?! This is so wonderful, but look at that! And this!" It's tough to focus when everything in life seems like a spectacular option.
This is how I have lived my life. Not to toot my own horn (HONK...awkward), but I have been more or less quite successful at all endeavours I've taken on. I have confidence that, when presented with a challenge, I will meet and exceed expectations simply because I put myself whole-heartedly into everything I do. It just seems like the only option. Why waste time doing something if you aren't going to do it right? However, it has meant that I have played the Jill-of-all-trades role professionally and personally all of my 30+ years. I get extremely fired up about something, throw myself into it, and then see something out of the corner of my eye and I'm off in another direction.
So I've traveled. I've played various roles in multiple work environments. I've been in love with a myriad of places and people and things, all seemingly contradictory. I've danced a thousand dances, and been blissful while doing it. But I've also been frustrated with my lack of focus and refinement in my choices. Sure it's great to enjoy everything life has to offer, but life's pretty short. Eventually I'll have to admit to myself I can't get to it all.
So then I had this baby. She came to us at a time where everything was a little hazy. I was working at a job that wasn't fulfilling something in me. I was living in a place where I felt very little connection to the community or the landscape. I was "floating around" more than ever, despite being married and "settled". And then I had this person in front of me, her tiny fingers grasped around my own, looking at me with eyes wide open to whatever it was I had to offer. To teach. To exemplify.
And things started to clear up. Maybe my tendency to view things from a million angles was an asset. And maybe, under it all, there were patterns to my passions. Maybe, perhaps, there could be some sustainability in my pursuits if I just learned to listen a little more carefully. And what better motivator to do so than to set an example for my daughter, who I want nothing more for than to live her own life of authenticity and joy. My responsibility as a mother meant showing her that this is not only possible, but the most worthwhile way to live.
And once recognizing this, things have started to fall into place. We have moved to a place where I am already weaving into the fabric of the community, feeling connected to like-minded people and being energized by their attitudes and activities. I have been writing, for pleasure and for professional purpose, which has always been dear to my heart. I am crafting and creating, making magic in my own personal spaces with artistic creations I enjoy and that bring me back to my own child-like wonder of the world. I have been "getting back out there", reconnecting with people and remembering how important it is to me to be around others. And maybe, most significantly as of late, I am feeling a real connection to this landscape I have moved into. There is something about this region of the world that has unexpectedly taken hold of me, stitching together interests I have pursued that have been seemingly unrelated until now.
I am on the verge of a new job. Violet is old enough and socially charged enough to leave the nest, so to speak. And I am finding it extremely exciting to consider my own goals again. I want to live a healthy, creative, connected life. I want to work with the land I live on in a sustainable way. I want to share my passions with people. I want to focus on savouring each day, because why else are we here? It is the reason I have wanted to pursue tourism and hospitality. It is the same reason I create whenever I can. Life is meant to be lived, and there is so much beauty and pleasure around us. People long for moments of joy and bliss, and what better way to experience these things than through a fresh, locally sourced meal, out in the sunshine, with a delicious glass of wine, great conversation, music, and fresh air. Perhaps surrounded by flowers and friends. Perhaps in a place you have never been before. What an honour it is to be a part of people's experiences like these. This is what I want, what I've always wanted. To help others find magic in their own lives.
For me, this is the secret clue to keeping all the seemingly messy parts of my life together. Travel, tourism, craft, art, music, nature, outdoor pursuits, education, writing, gardening - all of these things involve being present, appreciating beauty, and savouring life. And sharing it with others. That's the icing on the cake. The cream cheese frosting that really makes that carrot cake worth devouring.