Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Dear Almost 55 Year Old Self

Dear Almost 55 Year Old Elizabeth,

Ok, well maybe you aren't almost 55, you aren't even  54 1/2 right now, but as you are writing this letter you are feeling like you are 30 even though you aren't quite there.  Yes, that is right, at this time 25 years ago you were pretty much freaking out about turning 30 because your life was not where you thought it would be at this point in time. Your 18 year old self would have said at this point in time you would be on your way to partner at a major law firm in NYC, you wouldn't be married (or even have a boyfriend/fiance for that matter), you would be living in some swanky NYC apartment, and  you would NEVER be considering having kids.  Funny how your priorities changed somewhere between 18 and probably about 25.

At almost 29 1/2 years old you are married to not only the love of your life, but your best friend.  When you started dating M in college you never thought that you would get married, but here you are.  You are now contemplating when the best time to have kids will be... although M really wants a dog, so you may have to take baby steps and get the dog first.  You have also been looking at houses, but not too seriously as you still don't have a job in your career so you don't want to take the plunge and invest in a house when you don't know where you will be in 3 months, 6 months, a year.

Yes, that is correct almost 55 year old self, at almost 30 you STILL don't have a job in your chosen field.  Although you feel very discouraged that you don't have a job as an attorney (especially after paying so much money to attend law school) you haven't quite given up hope yet.  You had an interview at a major law firm, and they even had you back for a second interview and even though you didn't get the job you still have hope that something will come your way.  You have also been applying for ANY and EVERY job that you may be REMOTELY qualified for because you have hit your limit with bartending and need to find something more career oriented.

You are still super involved with Chi Omega and even serve as the Philadelphia Area Alumnae Chapter of Chi Omega's President.  Besides being President of the alum chapter, you also serve as the Esoteric Advisor, as well as Social Advisor to the Iota Lambda Chapter of Chi Omega at Villanova.  You love working with the collegiate girls although they sometimes make you want to tear your hair out.  Last year you were able to go to Firesides at the "mothership" a.k.a. Chi Omega headquarters in Memphis, TN and this year it is possible that you will be able to go to Convention in Orlando, FL.  (You are keeping your fingers and toes crossed that you get to head to Convention, but know that it is a possibility that you may not be able to based on budget concerns.)

At almost 30, you are super busy so you want to remind your 55 year old self to stop and smell the roses every so often.  Life will not end if you take a breather and it certainly will not end if you say "no" to people at times.  Your almost 30 year old self HATES to say no and as a result is almost always very busy and/or over-committed.  Almost 30 year old me would also like to remind my 55 year old self that even if your life is not where you thought it would be, it doesn't mean that you haven't lived your life to the fullest.  Sometimes priorities change and that is ok.  It is ok to not be a partner in a law firm... perhaps at 55 you will be a teacher or a restaurant manager or in sales or in finance or work for a college/university... who knows.  Whatever it is that you are doing though it is important that you are happy and that you are taking time to enjoy your life.

55 year old self, here's hoping the next 25 years are AMAZING!

Sincerely,
30 year old Elizabeth (ok, almost 29.5 year old Elizabeth... but you catch my drift)

If you could say something to yourself in 25 years, what would you say?

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