When do we reach a stage where we really know who we are? I used to think that by the time I was somewhere in my mid-30s I would know me and I would get me. More and more though, I’m realising I was wrong. Perhaps we’re always destined to be works in progress – shifting, changing, moving, going back and forth and around depending on that day, that year, that memory.
There’s something that happens as you get to that point where it looks like you might finally have your shit together. There’s the house, the job, the children, the husband, the realisation finally that hair oil tames the frizz and life’s too short for shoes that rub. Yes, there’s all that. There’s the seeming certainty over what you’re doing and where you’re going – at least on the surface of it all. But, the more of that settled-ness and decisiveness that there is – the more introspection there is too.
And this is when you realise, you’ll always be changing, becoming, falling apart, trying to be fixed, and adapting and learning all over again. As life happens around us, as we navigate it all and look back as well as forwards, we are of course going to change what we see, how it makes us feel, what it makes us do. How we might be or respond or hope or feel might be completely different from one week to the next.
Because, after all, we’re growing, learning, changing and still finding our way. I wouldn’t want it to be different really. There’s still so much to get my head round, there’s still so much to happen and make happen. I hope life as it goes does make me do things differently next time, see things differently, teach my children differently, be differently.
This process, at the moment, hurts a bit. But I’m taking comfort in knowing that there won’t be a goal or an end point or a resolution I either succeed at reaching or fail at attaining. There’s nowhere I need to get to. It’s not just me that’s the work in progress, it’s all that’s around me too. I’m going to take my time.