Mr. Facebook Guy.

The other day I friend requested someone on Facebook that I had heard lots about within my social circles. He has a reputation locally for being someone who is in the process of “doing it all” … travelling everywhere, meeting famous people, creating successful businesses, enjoying success in his various art forms, etc. I was intrigued by this guy … so thought I’d see more. He accepted my request. And like a true weirdo, I read through all his Facebook posts, checked out all his pictures and scoped out everything he was connected to (businesses, etc). And to be sure, this guy has fun. He is certainly successful at many things … and is living la vida loca. All at a very young age (which is key here to my mind). Impressive.

So, though I am sure this guy is lovely … his Facebook “resume” had me feeling like crap. I am sure this is not what he intended. At 38 years old, I am beginning to question the choices I have made … and whether I am living the life I want to live. Sometimes when we look back, given our current knowledge and wisdom (that only seems to come with age), we wonder why we wasted time doing some of the seemingly worthless activities that we were once engaged in. And sometimes thinking of that can feel painful … because we can’t rewrite our history … and we have no idea how much longer we will be given to create new chapters in our lives.

I spent about 2 days in a self-loathing fog. I asked myself questions like … why didn’t I go to school for Marine Biology like I wanted to? … why did I waste so much time living in Corinna? … why didn’t I spend more money on travel and less on other things? … could I have tried harder at succeeding at various pursuits, etc…. etc… etc…

Truth be told, this questioning got me no where. Of course. But I couldn’t find my way out of it. Then … well, then … somewhere within this ridiculous and unproductive mini-existential crisis … I was zipping up Isaac’s jacket. And it hit me. BIG. I get to parent Isaac. I am Isaac’s Mom. Yes, I am not just a Mom … I am me … with hopes and dreams of my own … but, THIS …. this is what I have been working toward most of my adult life.

I spent years trying to create this family. And this little family rocks. Sure, I would love to be travelling all over the world, to be CEO of various companies, to have my photography hanging in the Smithsonian, to find a new shark species and name it after myself, etc. But without Isaac and Halis, what would it be worth? And with Isaac and Halis, how could I be all these things and still be there for them … still enjoy them … still be the tight knit family that I want to be? The answer is an easy one for me … I can’t do “it all” and still have the family life that I have so longed for — and have finally arrived in. Maybe some people can. Maybe some people do. But I know that in order to co-create the life I want for my family … that we need to live simply … to spend loads of quality time together … to really see each other and help one another flourish. This doesn’t mean I can’t search for that elusive shark … or take rock-awesome pics … or travel to Paris. It just means that I am where I need to be right now … and the last 38 years was full of time well spent to get right here. THIS is what I created … a strong marriage, a loving family, a nurturing household.

I am Isaac’s Mom. I am Halis’s wife. I am a good friend. I am a contributing member of my beloved community. I am the best Me I can be (Ok, well – I try!). And though Mr. Facebook guy has a great life … and I am truly glad for him … and inspired by him … he does not get to spend his days teaching, playing with and enjoying Isaac. I do. And I am thankful. My cup runneth over.

Existential crisis averted. Till the next one 😉


Jodi Renshaw

About Jodi Renshaw

Jodi is a homeschooling Mom, a photographer, a wife, and a proud resident of the city of Bangor. She spends part of her time working at a locally-owned shop in the downtown area, part of her time homeschooling her favorite young man, and most of her time behind a camera lens. She often writes about adoption, family life, homeschooling, and community.