Saturday, April 24, 2010

Growing up too fast

I'm certain when you read the title of this post, you figured you were in for an upbeat account of my baby boy Luis...unfortunately, this is not the case, and I am actually referring to myself.

When I was in my teens, I had lofty ambitions of being a Tony award winning, double platinum member of the President's cabinet who trained dolphins in her spare time and had a Grammy on the mantle. I never entertained any notion that this would be impossible or that I wouldn't be able to accomplish any of these goals. That is the beauty of youth, endless hope and possibility.

I remember the exact moment I realized I probably wasn't going to be any of those things that I had daydreamed about while sitting in French class.

It was on my 21st birthday; I remember every detail about that day. I spent all afternoon with Casey trying to find every way we could bait someone into carding us so I could flash my ID. Casey's gift was escorting me to the DMV to get that dreaded green line that signifies "UNDER 21" removed from my license. I got a great new picture of the "grown up " 21 year old me and the green line erased. Back in the car I took a good look at the license and noticed the expiration date...11/16/2011.

I gasped out loud. In 2011, I will be 28 years old. My thoughts were racing. I was going to be 28 someday, and then I was going to be 30. How is it possible that I never thought of this before? My dreams had an expiration date, and this was the moment I realized it. I made a comment about how surreal growing up was, but I didn't let on how heartbroken I was.

This year I will be 27, one year to my DMV deadline, and I am no longer discouraged. I realized some time ago that my childhood dreams may be vanishing, but my adult dreams have not. I may not be a Tony Award Winning Broadway star, but I found an amazing husband that loves me unconditionally, and he goes to see musicals with me...even though they are not his thing. He even manages to enjoy himself sometimes. I might not ever be a Grammy Award Winning musician who went double platinum, but I do have the gift of being a mother to, quite possibly, the cutest little boy ever ( he even has a bib proclaiming this fact) and I can't imagine a better award than that. I know that I won't be a member of the President's cabinet, but I have the opportunity to be a stay at home mom to teach and advise my own child to be a productive member of society.

I still do daydream every so often about standing ovations, singing to huge crowds, and looking out the window from Air Force One, but these dreams don't make me sad. I am quite hopeful that maybe my son will share some of my early ambitions.

I am not totally fearless as I approach the third decade of my life. I have adjusted my goals to realistically reflect my near future, but I am no longer moving forward blindly, thinking my dreams don't have a zero hour. My experience at the DMV has taught me otherwise. I know that 30 is right around the corner, but I'm pressing forward.

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