And then I got all introspective~

The table after undecorating the house.

I had a post ready to go for this morning. A lighthearted, cook-with-the-kids, extremely-yummy-cookie post. (Which I promise to post tomorrow.) But then I got all introspective...and since this is my first post of the new decade, I thought to myself that perhaps being all introspective is a nice way to ring in the new year.

It started innocently enough.

Mr. Two is my talker. If you have more than one kid, chances are one of them is the talker. Not that the others don't talk...but this one talks more. A lot more. You know what I mean. The one that follows you around chattering on about whatever pops in his little head at the moment. Luckily, Mr. Two is funny. I mean really funny. So he is easy to listen to.

This morning he was chatting away about what color his heart is...."Mommy is my heart pink, or red, or black?"

"Pink," was my immediate and not very well thought-out answer.

"How do people know what color hearts are, mommy?" and then immediately, "doctors know because they can look at them, right?"

"Right." That answer worked as well as any for me...and saved me from having to think up something better.

Then he continued without missing a beat. "I want to be a doctor and a dinosaur and a astronaut when I grow up, mommy."

"That's wonderful!" I enthused. I'd heard that he wanted to be a dinosaur and an astronaut, but I appreciated the addition of being a doctor. I'm nothing if not practical.

But then came the question that tilted my morning on its side, and sent my mind spinning through my life...the past, the present, the future. The lives of my children.

He looked at me and asked, "But mommy, do you really turn into what you want to be when you grow up?"

I was staring at the computer screen when he asked, so I looked up and studied his earnest little face.

"Ask Mommy again." I wanted to be sure I heard him right.

"Mommy, do you really turn into what you want to be when you grow up?"

"You can be anything you want to be if you try hard enough." I replied, but suspecting he REALLY wants to be a dinosaur, I added, "I don't think you can really turn into a dinosaur though."

"Then I'll be a doctor and a astronaut, mommy."

"Good idea." I smiled.

"But I really want to be a dinosuar," he frowned just a little.

"Maybe you can." I smiled again.

And that was the end of our conversation. He skipped off to play with his toys in his bedroom, and I sat there, my mind in a twist.

Am I what I hoped to be when I grew up?

Partially, I guess.

I'm a mother. I always wanted to be a mother. I'm working on becoming a designer. I've always loved that....from the time I was tiny. I don't think I was one of those kids that had a specific dream...well maybe being a dancer...but really, I was quite fickle in the what-I-want-to-be-when-I-grow-up department.

So, in my case, at least, I think the question is "Am I following a path that makes me happy and is fulfilling? Am I following my bliss?" Not "Have I arrived?" And I think the answer to that is "yes."

For those of you that have been reading my blog for a while, you know that 2010 was a very difficult year for my family. My husband was in a car accident that nearly claimed his life at the end of August. The day after his accident, my contracted job ended. Needless to say, nursing my hubby back to health, with neither of us working, things have been difficult this year. Thankfully, we have had wonderful support, and a bit of retirement money to live off of, but I can safely say that I am not sad to see 2010 go.

2011 holds promise for me. I am starting to work again. The hubby has been working a bit here and there, and is almost well enough to really get our photography business running again. I get to come here and visit with you all on this blog. I love writing this blog. It is my bliss. It is what I want to do when I grow up. And I get to. I get to chase my dreams. Designing, blogging, writing, being a mom.

I read a quote the other day that said it all....

"She went out on a limb, had it break off behind her, and realized she could fly."
Kobi Yamada

So here's to going out on a limb and chasing dreams in 2011.

And here's to my 5-year-old that cuts through all the fluff and makes his mom really think.

Happy New Year!



Peggy said...

Thank you for this post! I have followed your journey faithfully over the past year...while attempting to journal my own journey (abysmal failure....) but realized something along the way. I was not ready and I'm still not ready. Henceforth the sporadic posting on my blog... I've come to realize that I was placing others expectations on myself. What did they think I ought to do, what should I be, did I meet their standards? Well times are a changing! I want to thank you for inspiring me! My family is noticing some of the changes (not big things but hopefully bigger as time progresses!) but mostly my husband is noticing! And he is so supportive! I love that man!
As I said once before... thank you!

BESOS LYNN said...

Great, GREAT post. I really enjoyed it....

Julie Johnson said...

Beautifully written. Thank you for being a source of inspiration. I love that quote, and it was my mantra for 2010...my word was "fly." I went out on more than a few limbs...and the results were more than I ever could have hoped for. Looking for a new quote and word to inspire me in 2011. Happy New Year to you too!

Ratty Hugs said...

Please give Mr. Two a big hug from me. What a wonderful question, such depth & inspiration. And your quote was wonderful also.
Thanks to both of you for the push on the limb.

Miss Obara said...

That was really sweet. I, too, have a had a terrible 2010. My daughter was really sick, but is doing much much better now. But, I totally get it when you have to put your 'dreams' on hold to help others...and I get it when you say so long 2010. And i get it when you say...go out on a limb....i'll be flying also in 2011!!! thanks for sharing.

my name is carey! said...

Thank you. Thank you for you, for the blog, for the thoughts. You are an artist. With Joy, Carey

Theresa said...

Funny how the innocent can make us think such deep thoughts! I love your response...you can be anything if you try hard enough {well, maybe not a dinosaur!}. I still don't have an answer to 'what do you want to be when you grow up?' so I appreciate you rephrasing it as, "Am I following my bliss?" So far, so good!
Thanks for the beautiful beginning to 2011!

Lindsey said...

what a great post to start the new year...one of my favorite books starts with this line "Once upon a time, there was a woman who discovered she had turned into the wrong person"

that always grips me, have i turned into the person i wanted to be? i'm i someone else i don't really know? yes, i became a mom which was my ultimate dream. i gave up my other dreams because i knew that one was the most important to me, but am i who i think i am? so much to think upon! :)

Finding Home said...


Thanks for such a beautiful post. I have followed you from the beginning of entering the blog world and have followed through the up and downs that you have shared. I wish you and your family all of the best for 2011 and beyond. And, I thank your little man for such an inspirational question that choked me up a bit when I read it. What a beautiful quote, thanks for sharing, it is so true and valid. Kindly, Laura

Anna @ Take the Side Street said...

Excellent post and question for us all to consider! And I heart that quote, might have to "borrow" it ;)

Here's to a fabulous 2011 for you and yours!

Missy said...

This was a lovely post. Best of luck in 2011!

Carol@SofasandSage.com said...

Our kids really do bring us right to the heart of things, don't they? I love this question of his. How many of us ever become what we hope for when we are young? I've come a bit full circle with wanting to be a writer when I was a teenager. I have a blog to play with! I wish all good and healthy things for your family in 2011!

KREW said...

My daughter once asked me, "Mommy, didn't you ever want to be anything besides a mommy?", hinting that she sensed a lack of ambition. She clearly didn't appreciate the fact that I stopped working when she, my second child, was born. Ever since then, probably six years, I've been trying to show that being a Mommy is awesome and worth every second, and that she should follow her own bliss.

Thanks for the introspection. Definitely a good thing.

Vintage Gal said...

Wendy ~ what a beautiful post! A great way to start off 2011. I'm new to your blog, but have read older posts and my heart went out to you. You deserve all the best in 2011. And what do they say ~ out of the mouths of babes?;)

Sandi @the WhistleStop Cafe said...

You know... sometimes that limb cracks, and we spend so much time trying to figure out how not stress it, and how to fix it.
When maybe we should be flapping our wings.
I love your post!

Attempting Aloha said...

Thanks for sharing a bit of your heart. You're inspirational on so many levels.

Hoping you enjoy happiness in 2011 and a little bit of peace, relaxation, and aloha! ;)


Katherine said...

Happy New Year to you too. I hope that this year is better for your family. Love the conversation with your boy. My two boys (mainly the littlest one now) constantly make me laugh with the things they say - I try to write down as many as I can - for future reference!;-)

Redbud Lane Farm said...

I am 37 years old and still don't know what I want to be when I grow up! :)

Sarah @ Cozy.Cottage.Cute. said...

Kids say the darndest things sometimes don't they?

Glad to hear your husband is doing well.

Cheers to a happy and fulfilling 2011!

Garden Travels said...

Here! Here! to farwelling 2010 & trusting kids to provide us with the best wisdom and perspective!

I've always thought a better question to ask children & ourselves is "Who do you want to be when you grow up?" 'cause that stays with us no matter what is happening or what we are busy doing!

Carmen @ Life with Sprinkles on Top said...

Amen! Here's to a fabulous 2011!

randomcathy.com said...

Wow, fantastic post. Thank you for sharing this...

Donna~One Simple Country Girl said...

Out of the mouths of babes. . .
Love the quote and love this post! Thank you for reminding me to follow my bliss! Have a blessed day and a blessed 2011!

Chandra Chinnis said...

Great post that I needed. May you be blessed in 2011 with peace and joy.

janet said...

I am new to your blog and love it..I did go back and read all your prior posts..My heart goes out to you..May 2011 be a great year for you and your family..God Bless..

Tonya said...

Great post! Its amazing how sometimes the minds of our children can make us take a step back and analyze our own lives! They are much smarter than we give them credit for sometimes! This is my first visit to your blog, but I think I will definitely be coming back to visit! Hope 2011 is a better year for you & your family!

Holly said...

Awww... that really made me think! I could even hear him talking in my mind. I am still not sure I know what I want to be when I grow up. What an insightful post!! I really enjoyed that!

Lettered Cottage said...

Happy New Year Wendy!
I believe in you!

Layla :-)

Kerri said...

Your Mr Two sounds like a sweetheart. Your post reminded me of one of my all-time favorite quotes which is on a magnet on my fridge for inspiration. It's by George Eliot. Perhaps you've seen in along the way too: "It's never too late to be who you might have been." Happy New Year!

Courtney {a thoughtful place} said...

I am so thankful you set aside your other post and wrote this. what a moment with your son. I would be framing his quote somewhere in the house as a gentle reminder to follow your bliss. It really is amazing. I wish you great things for 2011. Good for you for doing what makes you happy. {and the quote about the limb breaking and flying is just beautiful.}

Anna See said...

Beautiful post, Wendy! Here's to a wonderful 2011 for you and your family.

Taylor said...

Beautiful post-thank you for sharing!

Peggy Lee said...

Thank you so much for this post! It only seems like yesterday when my now 24 year old son was coming out with things like that.

I miss that.

Here's to a new year full of many wonderful memories made.

Rachel said...

I rarely comment (Shame on me, I know), but I always check your blog. This one actually brought me to tears! What a sweet, intelligent boy you have. I have a three year old daughter who already asks me questions like those. She is very literal. And now I have some good advice to follow should she ever ask the above!

Wendy said...

Lovely post. It's good to be reminded of these things. I'm sorry your year has been so difficult...but happy things are looking hopeful. Thanks for sharing your son's query. That was beautifully written!

Dana {Southern Inspired} said...

I'm a new follower of your blog! Thank you so much for posting this - it really hit home for me. I'm not at all doing "what I want to do when I grow up". And I think that quote and story just made me realize that life is really too short to be anything but happy and so I'm going to make it my goal for 2011 to focus more on doing what I want to do and being who I want to be {career-wise}. Hope you have a wonderful start to 2011!

Kim @ Sand and Sisal said...

Dear Wendy-
I just discovered you today from my sister's blog, The Stories of A2Z. As I read this, it was as if I was hearing myself speak. The tears startd flowing which frankly, surprised me. Our kids minds see life so clearly, which such hope and promise. It is truly a joy to watch, isn't it? Beth (sis) & I have both had a difficult 2010 also, and we both are looking forward to a new year with hopeful possibilities. Blessings to you & your family, Happy New Year.
- Kim

Never Enough Thyme Creations said...

What a great post and thanks for the inspriration for me to go out on my limb!! It is time!! Best of everything to you and your family in 2011.

thewelcomehome said...

Wow. It is amazing what innocent children say and how it can impact your day.

I hope 2011 is a year of flying for you and your family.

I had the limb break last year and it has allowed me to follow my bliss and soar. (but trust me it has been and continues to be scary).

I found on a blog somewhere (wish I could give credit) a saying "She believed she could so she did. I hung it in my office (just a cut out piece of printer paper) and it helps give me confidence.

Best wishes in 2011.

thewelcomehome said...

Wow. It is amazing what innocent children say and how it can impact your day.

I hope 2011 is a year of flying for you and your family.

I had the limb break last year and it has allowed me to follow my bliss and soar. (but trust me it has been and continues to be scary).

I found on a blog somewhere (wish I could give credit) a saying "She believed she could so she did. I hung it in my office (just a cut out piece of printer paper) and it helps give me confidence.

Best wishes in 2011.

LuLu said...

Oh Wendy this is such a fabulous post. Loved it!!!! I'm wishing you all the best and right there with you.... going out on a limb!

Lisa said...

I love that quote - and this post - and your little 5 year old has me thinking too! Happy new year if I haven't told you yet!

His girl said...

Beautiful post! It's during the season's of stuggle when we grow and mature. These season's stink but they really help us to appreciate the simple beauty of life. Blessings! www.blessedwiththese.blogspot.com

Laura said...

Thank you for a beautiful post to start the new year. The love of our families and being happy & content with ourselves is so important.
Happy new year to you & your family!

Pam @ Frippery said...

I too am happy to put 2010 behind us, not the best year here either. Hoping and wishing for all good things for your dear family in 2011!