You would think, after 34 years of learning already, that I would "get" that life doesn't always go how you plan. God in his infinite wisdom doesn't look down and say "You know, [insert name here] knows what she's doing, so I'm going to give her free rein and let all her hearts desires come true."
If that were really the case, and rainbows really spewed out Skittles and laundry did itself, life would be different. The 17-year-old Amy thought when she was the OLD age of 34 she would be on a beach somewhere with her coconut oiled babies running around in the sand while her sexy-as-hell surfer lovebug was out on the waves. In the vision, each night we would return to our modest beach hut and sit by the campfire in our poncho sweaters and words like 'brah" and "wicked" would be tossed around like a hacky sack...I blame Bill and Ted for this...and Point Break! Damn you Keanue!
But, reality is SO far from what I thought I wanted. Truth be told, I know in another 10 years when I look back and think of what I wanted at 34 will be different from the reality of 44. And I have to believe that all the 'things' that go on right now will make the life at 44 all the much more enjoyable, that I will appreciate it even more than I appreciate all I have now.
I laugh with my family about things that stress me out now - getting nervous to speak in front of groups, worrying about how to increase my book sales without spamming (and annoying) the hell out of all my friends and family. I joke that one day, when I'm the guest speaker at the Romance Writers of America convention or the subject of Oprah's Next Chapter, that I will laugh at myself for stressing about things now.
But I do stress. Because to me, writing isn't just a creative outlet. It isn't a way to live out my fantasies with random men (though the visuals are nice :D). I want this to be my livelihood, my way to make my way in this world. The path will be long and I hope at some point the terrain will be a little more smooth. But I also know that these bumps, costly detours, and roadside distractions, will all be worth it in the end.
Because in the end, I will be following my heart, living my dream, and (hopefully) inspiring others to find and follow their own passions.
I have no clue where life is going to lead me in 10 minutes, let alone 10 years. My guesses have been wrong most of the time. And after having spent thousands of dollars on psychics (yes - THOUSANDS - no, not proud of it), I have learned one thing - nobody knows what tomorrow will bring. But if we move one foot in front of the other and can keep hold of even the tiniest mustard seed of faith, our journeys will be all we could ever want and more. It's looking past the struggle, moving around the roadblock, and pressing forward with a determination to make a difference - in our own life and the lives of those around us.