My life is nothing like I thought it would be. I wonder if anyone has life that goes exactly according to plan. If so, I'd love to meet that person and spend an afternoon with them to discover how they were able to chart their course and have it come true, and I'd really love to know if they are satisfied with their perfect planning.
I, however, am glad my life turned out differently than I planned. If I would've had it my way, I'd be living in a big city somewhere, teaching English (or at least trying to), and enjoying the life of solitary woman. You see, I never thought I'd get married, let alone have children. It was the farthest thing from my young adult mind. I didn't grow up in the midst of flourishing marriages so marriage seemed like the last thing I ever wanted to commit to, and I was bent on holding out to the bitter end. I'm glad that didn't happen. Mostly because dating is the absolute worst thing on the planet, especially first dates. And I had a lot of first dates; I had a really hard time enticing guys to come around a second time.
Luckily, Tim happened. He is the very best decision I ever made, and I mean it. He is the yin to my yang. The peanut butter to my jelly. The honey to my cornbread. The up to my down. The apple of my eye. You get the picture. Because of Tim and a really ill-timed UTI, we got pregnant with Mya while on birth control. I only wish you could've been there when I took all three of those pregnancy tests only to disbelieve each of them and march myself to the health center to have my blood drawn. Positive. I was pregnant. Just like Tim's cousin who got married two weeks before us, we had a five year plan. That five year plan lasted all of four months. And thank goodness for that.
Mya is the second best unplanned decision I ever made. Our relationship is like wine--it gets better with time. Time has been nothing but good to us. I can't tell you how much I love the relationship we have. We just get each other, and then sometimes we don't, but those times are when we grow the most.
Fast forward six years, and here I am typing upstairs in a two-story home that I own (I said I'd never buy a home with stairs!), and I have three more girls and a dog. I don't like most dogs so Blue's existence in our house is nothing short of a miracle. That's what I get for being impulsive. ;) I never thought I'd visit the midwest let alone live in it. I never ever ever wanted to live in California, and I fell in love with California, just not its high cost of living. And I never imagined living in Texas. Never. And yet, here I am. And do I dare say a few things are growing on me? The other day I was outside watching the girls play with the neighborhood gang, and a little girl came riding by on her scooter and yelled, "Watch out y'all?" in the smoothest southern drawl, and it just made me smile. You won't hear me or my mountain west accent blurting out "y'all" or "fixin" anytime soon, but it is charming to hear small children say it.
If our life could be etched out on a piece of paper, I think it would look a lot like the graph of contractions they show you after you've given birth. There have been a lot of high moments, several low ones, but for the most part, our life has had several steady periods, and I'm grateful for the steady periods because the highs and lows can really get you. I guess as I look back over time and this imaginary graph, the thing that sticks out to me is that the graph is always moving forward. It never stops. It doesn't go backward. It is one forward movement, moving us to greater moments, even if those moments involve a bit of pain, and they often do. So even though my life isn't at all like I thought it would be, it is still pushing forward into the unknown, and I think that's what I like best about it.