“Oh, you have plenty of time” And Other Lies

I thought I’d be something more successful by now.  I’ve mentioned this before but bear with me, I’ve got a different point today.  I’m not unsuccessful; I’m just not what I want to be, professionally and maybe a little personally.  I’ll be twenty-nine soon, and not that it’s the end of the world and not that I’ll have a little “almost thirty” or “twenty-nine forever” crisis but damn it, I can if I want to.

When I was in high school all my teachers from math to gym said I would be the next Katie Couric.  That’s when Katie was unstoppable and on the Today Show.  That is also when I respected the Today Show and before Kathie Lee had anything to do with it, and before I started to see through major media outlets.  I never felt like my supporters were blowing smoke up my rear and I felt like I had such a bright future.  I had talent and I had zero fear to stop me from getting where I wanted to be.  I also had a psychic who told me I’d work for the BBC.  Well, reality took over and I was too levelheaded to take a career with so much risk.  Fine, I’m ok with that because it’s not like I tried and didn’t succeed.  I just didn’t try.  Eck, not much better.

I also thought I’d be a mom by now, and more than to just my pug.  It’s pretty common for my generation that I’m not one at this age, and most of my friends aren’t moms yet but by the end of the year I’ll have been married five years, so the clock seems a little different to me.  I’m not waiting to meet Mr. Right.  I already found him.  “Oh, you have plenty of time” they say.  “Why are you rushing things?  There’s so much life ahead of you.”  Really?  Do these particular people, who are almost everyone, by the way, really believe that there is always plenty of time?  Did they not just tell me how fast time goes and how they can’t believe this, that or the other never happened or happened too fast?  Don’t lie to me, we all know I need to get moving on some things.

If these people read my blog I might expect these kind of reassuring comments because I write what I’m actually thinking but I’m not sure I emphasize my concerns out loud in real life, which is why I’m not sure why they try to appease feelings I haven’t necessarily stated.  Am I that transparent?  I don’t need pity because I don’t have a dream job or I don’t have kids.  I know that everything does happen for a reason, even though that sometimes feels like a lie at times too.  I think I’m doing pretty well for almost thirty; I just don’t need unrequested or false reassurance.

But why treat me like I’m an exception?  No one can control time or slow it down.  I’m happy with so many things but who doesn’t want more?  If I stopped wanting more, I may as well just stop breathing because being sedentary is not a lifestyle and mundane is not who I am.  So in the meantime, while some things are out of my hands, I will at least pursue the things I want now and let the chips fall where they may.  I can at least say I tried.

Also, the people who love me can stop telling me I look great.  My entire being is reflecting the inner turmoil in the form of unfortunate skin, dull hair and a muffin top.  Though honesty hurts, someone could’ve told me to start doing some sit-ups before I went bathing suit shopping today.  That was a very unfortunate experience.  Being told I’m “beautiful just the way you are” is a cop out and now I know what that means.  It’s impossible to shield your mind from the horrors of what a few swatches of spandex and lycra pronounce and de-pronounce at the same time.  It’s certainly encouraged me to either buy a parka this year or wake up early and start running, I’ll tell you that much.

I should find that psychic lady.  The only thing she was right about at this point was telling me when my Gram would die and to be honest, those are the kind of things I’m not sure I want to know in advance ever again.  Oh, she did tell me that my high school boyfriend wasn’t my soul mate, good call lady.

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7 thoughts on ““Oh, you have plenty of time” And Other Lies

  1. There is no time, it isn’t even like an hour glass, it is like pouring sand through a mason jar lid ring. It is an unstoppable machine moving us all toward the same end. That is why it is so important to do the things you want to when you want and find what makes you happy.

  2. Guess what? Life changes! Not many people turn out to be what they projected in high school, but that doesn’t mean that they’ve settled for something less, just something different and sometimes something much more wonderful.. You just have to be very careful that the option you have today doesn’t become a non-option in a very few years.

    • Thanks for your comment, as always.

      I think my main point is that people either lie to themselves or lie to others, about time. I don’t expect things to remain what we expected in high school, but we can’t lose sight when we want more. Life changes but our ambitions to be more don’t, at least for me and time passes whether we like it or not. That is just a fact that we can’t change.

  3. Reblogged this on The cure for cleverness and commented:
    A great post by Shannon Hadley, reflecting on the young impulse to be successful, and it’s ongoing battle with the malaise that creeps into our lives through our 20’s. I feel like I could have written it myself, except for the Katie Couric part. Man, does the bit about parenthood hit close to home.

  4. When you write posts that hit this close to home, I wish the “Like” button either said “Love” or “Brain Twin.”

    I’m extremely happy with my circumstances. I feel as blessed as possible, and honestly, my life is awesome. But that’s my life, not my person. When I look in the mirror I can’t help but be a little disappointed, and I’m not limiting that to my physical appearance, though I can definitely relate to the skin, hair, and muffin top deal. Add in the bags under my eyes and the nont-unrelated coffee-stained teeth, and I’m just not sure what I’m doing with my life.

    I mean, my life is awesome, but what am I doing with it? As you said, I feel like the neglect I’ve shown for my body is an emblem for my inner turmoil, and I also think it’s a direct metaphor for the way I neglect this awesome life I’ve been given.

    Great, great post Shannon. Very deep.

    • Thank you so much for sharing. I’m glad you were able to relate but sorry at the same time, because it’s a very difficult mindset to escape. I agree that my life is pretty awesome but there is something inside that just makes me want more; like there must be more than working to pay insurance on everything. We work so hard as a preventative measure to life, and waste real life in the process. It’s difficult because we all can’t be free spirits either.

      I always appreciate your time and feedback. If it helps, you have had a lot to offer as fellow blogger and that made a difference to me!

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