Looking back on my life, I know there have been some defining moments, moments that changed the course of my life. I am definitely not proud of each defining moment, but they are part of my life’s history.
Of course this is not a memory I have, but one I have been told. Apparently I was only 9 months old when I stood up and walked. My mom told me how the neighbors were over for a visit, and they had their baby daughter with them. She was a couple of months older than I was, and could already walk. She and I were playing together, when she took one of my toys, got up and walked away. I moaned about it, but of course she didn’t come back, so I stood up, followed her and took my toy back.
Mom said I did it out of jealousy, but I think this was the earliest in my life where I displayed this behavior, as my things are my things. No, I am not jealous, and yes, I do share, but I never ever shared my clothes with my friends (or had the desire to try theirs on) and some things are just not to be used by others, because it is mine. I can’t explain this behavior, but it has always been part of me, and will always be. Some things are just not meant to be shared.
Deciding to get pregnant
Maybe one of the most defining moments in my life was when I decided to get pregnant for all the wrong reasons and at a time in my life where this shouldn’t even have been on my mind. I sometimes wonder what my life would have been like if I hadn’t fell pregnant at sixteen, but then immediately dismiss the thought, because I can’t imagine my life without my daughter. We had difficult times together, but we made it through and live happy lives now.
Marriage and divorce
Isn’t those moments in which you decide to get married very defining or the course your life will run after that? The first time I got married was in May 1987 (not to the father of my child), at the age of 20, and by the age of 22 I was divorced, exactly two years and a month after the wedding date. By then I was mother of two children.
I had some relationships after that, but every time returned to my single state. My next marriage started in August 1998, and six months into the marriage I knew it was a mistake. I wasn’t going to admit my mistake, but just ‘make the best of it’. The marriage eventually lasted almost 4 years, as we were divorced in July 2002.
I wasn’t planning to ever get married again, but Master T and I got in contact with each other in April 2002 (four months after I left my second husband) and the rest is, as they say, history. We celebrate our fifteenth wedding anniversary in November 2020.
Another defining moment was when I had my burnout. I am a perfectionist and a hard worker, and besides that I have a high productivity. The first time I do something, I subconsciously determine how I can speed up the process, and by the time I do a routine job the third time, I have found the shortest route to do it. However, all these things together and having little support from others around me, was a recipe for a burnout, something that happened in early 2012.
There is something so intensely surreal when you go from being highly functional to not being able to do anything anymore. Only sit on the couch, thinking ‘I have to…’.
The burnout was a turning point in my life, realizing that I am not superwoman. Also, I have never been the same after the burnout than before. I still have the some perfectionism and high productivity, but mentally I can take a lot less. I returned to work in the second half of 2012, but it took me until 2016 (when I cut back from a 5-day to a 4-day work week) to really feel like I am on top of things again.
You only have to read the posts I wrote after mom’s passing in July 2017 to know that having my mom ripped out of my life had a huge impact on my life. Not only did it bring me to a deeper low than I had during my ‘burnout years’ but now, three years after her passing, I still miss her as deeply as I did just after she had passed. My life will never be the same. I thought I would have my mom with me for at least another 10-15 years. It feels like the impact her death (and supporting her in the months leading up to that) had, will always be of some influence in my life.
Then of course there’s 2020. This feels like a defining year to the entire world. None of us have ever lived through what we are experiencing now, and I believe even those who say they are not mentally affected by the global situation, are. This year has also had another defining moment, something that had me shaking for weeks, and I can now look back and say I had the worst, and be thankful for how much wiser I came out on the other side. My life is more balanced now than it was before that moment, and for that I am incredibly grateful!
© Rebel’s Notes
Image from Pixabay