In the Fall of 2012 I went on an amazing trip to Seattle and spent about a week in the city, exploring and experiencing life in general. I had a good deal of time to myself because I was tagging along on a conference. I didn't actively seek a "marker" of when my mindset started to change about magic, life in general, my future, the fact that time for us all is running out in terms of being authentic and true to ourselves, etc. But, for some reason, that trip has become a marker for me. Nope, nothing extraordinary happened. I didn't have a prophetic experience there. I never “dreamed” of visiting Seattle (although as it turns out it was a lovely city!) so it isn’t like it was a “trip of a lifetime”. It was more of an unexpected opportunity, so I went. All in all I had a great time and arrived home happy and exhausted, at least from what I recall.
It was, however, shortly after this that I began to struggle with chronic fatigue (which was my own fault having been pushing myself very hard physically for years) and decided to take a break from travel and concentrate on me. I struggled to do this for some time. Almost two years actually. I did eventually win the CF battle but, I was told that being "still" was not the answer by those close to me (who do not like being still LOL) and for some time, I believed it. It MUST be ME then. I just must not be able to pull my shit together and care about life...
I took baby steps though, tried to be the person I desperately wanted to be... There was major upheaval both personally and professionally. I lost my long-term lease horse. Not to illness or death but to differing philosophies between owner, trainer and caregiver. Owner trumps caregiver AND trainer. I lost my way. I found myself uninspired to light a fucking candle much less actually talk to the moon. I lost my perspective. I worried I might lose my job in the midst of crazy talks of mega-park systems, other people's retirements and power plays. I lost my soul. My personal life became some odd sort of contemplation on the tree of woe, only not that dramatic! I say it only for the buzzard reference LOL. I felt pieces of me getting pecked away while I stared down at them, trying to figure out how to put them back while not upsetting the apple cart of what I had participated in building...
I found myself at an age where many windows were closed. I will never have children. This is not something that I ever wanted deeply so it doesn't shatter my sense of "everything is as it should be" but it is sobering when thought of in terms of the norms of our peers and friends. I had dreams that will not come true. I will never be a veterinarian. Again, my choices have made this so because it WAS possible. I am educated and was encouraged to learn, so I have not one person on earth to blame for not following a childhood dream but myself. I left my next best "dream" job in the veterinary industry many, many years ago and could never catch up on the technology or experience in that field to regain anything close to it.
Once again, my choice. Yes there were life circumstances, money and other factors at the time that played heavily in my decision. But, repeat, right place/some of the people, very wrong time in my life.
I somewhere had to make peace with the fact that these were all my choices. There were others involved in my life for certain. None of us live in a vortex of "self" although sometimes it would be easier if we did in many respects. But, in the end, I had made choices as we all do and I had built a life that was not a bad life at all. It was a good life. But it wasn't mine. For those my age and older, I tend to not believe anyone that says "I have no regrets" and feel like possibly they are just not willing to explore them. It is extremely painful to do so, admittedly. But, in times of reflection and planning it seems to me that I have to go there in order to count the many blessings that one does have, so to speak. Every day is NOT a walk through lovely wild flowers! But, I’m getting better at the process of just being. It is worth the effort to take the damn time to notice everything that seems to pass us by while we chase the dreams of others and try to keep up with the folks down the street.