Years ago I lived a traditional suburban life - the “American Dream.”
I was a:
- College Graduate
- Home Owner
- Church Member
- 401K Retirement Contributor
And for a few years, I was fine with this pre-scripted life. This “one-size fits all” formula.
But it wasn’t long before I discovered that the one-size did not fit me. I read ahead in the script and didn’t like how it ended. I took a closer look at the reality of my roles:
- Wife. Spending time with my husband for only a few hours each evening and most weekends.
- Mother. Watching the neighborhood mothers playing taxi-driver getting their kids to school/playdates/practices/games. Dreading the day that I would have to do the same.
- College Educated. Two degrees and twelve years to pay off the debt from getting them.
- Home Owner. Actually a 30-year mortgage owner with little true equity.
- Church Member. Worship service attendee. Sunday school teacher. MOPS leader. Women’s group leader. Bible study facilitator. All at the same time. Where was Jesus in that?
- 401K Retirement Contributor: Until 9/11, when the company downsized and Mike lost his corporate job.
I became discontented. And depressed. I wanted to wake up from this American Dream.
And I did wake up. It just took several years.
I re-wrote the script. I became:
- The CFO for Mike’s new business.
- A teacher for my now homeschooled kids.
- A Christ-follower after we left the mega-church.
- A millionaire after we paid off all debt but the mortgage. Okay, not really. But, less in debt.
In 2010 we decided to leave suburbia to see what else was out there. What we found was a life that went completely off-script. The perfect fit. A chance to re-define our American Dream. And ourselves.
- I am still a wife, riding the ups and down of life with my best friend and business partner.
- I am still a homeschooling mother, although my role has shifted from full-out teacher to facilitator.
- I’m a self-led learner - now starting (another) business, assisting my children to become adults, redefining who I am.
- I’m a host - welcoming people into my home with ease, without running around to clean or stressing about what to feed them.
- I’m a relationship-driven follower of Christ - trading church attendance for seeking Jesus in relationships with people that God brings into my life.
- A life-long worker with no plans to retire.
Continuing to live my life. Unscripted.
[Calmly, purposefully, and without looking back, makes her way through the house and out the doors.]