Life really began for me after I met my husband, and not just because I fell in love with him. Growing up wasn’t terribly great in the personal growth sense- at the very least. I was a troubled kid and it’s no wonder as I look back on it.
Very early on relationships with my closest family members dissolved into distrust and indifference. I think I spent most of my time just surviving. Not surviving a volatile and abusive relationship, although there were times, but surviving distant parents (in their own ways), not leaving my house much and having the god damn tv on all the time. At least that’s a small look into the way I was raised.
I had no aspirations to do anything. It never occurred to me that I was capable of doing anything significant. I didn’t see a future beyond 20 years old. I just went about each day not hoping or dreaming of more. My world was slightly tilted when I started rock climbing. It was a shock that I was really good at climbing since I was always lead to believe that sports weren’t my thing. I came to climbing in a strange sideways fashion. I’d met someone who didn’t realise they wouldn’t be welcome at the party they walked into. I offered to walk him out before he was roughly thrown out. I still don’t know what made me agree to go to his place of work the next day to try rock climbing. I was offered a job in the gym shortly after and a passion was born.
My world was thrown totally out of whack when I met my husband (also a fairly sideways introduction I’ll save for another time). Here was this intelligent and life experienced guy who just expected me to know more than I did. The worst part was that he didn’t shame, criticise or make fun when it was clear I didn’t know much and I asked the most simple of questions. Then I asked more and more. I wanted to know how things worked, about world politics and how to experience the outdoors. I went swimming in a lake for the first time with my husband… so many basic firsts with him. I started looking outside of our relationship for more. I allowed myself to be vulnerable and try new things wherever my interest was sparked. I joined the local badminton team, the bridge group (despite being the youngest by about 40 years…), got a job at the post office where I thrived, I wasn’t embarrassed to listen to the radio and read articles and form my own opinions on things. I was excited by life for the first time ever.
What’s the point to all this? I’m not exactly sure. It’s been on my mind lately how much I’ve grown. Lately I’ve realised that I have a lot of interests I wouldn’t have ever dreamed of, like engineering. I’ve thought a lot about my family life growing up and it’s obviously inspired a different approach with my own kids. It drives me to work harder to be the parent I want to be instead of how I might immediately feel and react in tough moments. I just want so much more out of life.