Restructuring My Perfect Plan

I went to school to sit prettily at my desk in expensive heels and perfectly manicured nails and tick away on my keyboard while my personal phone rang and I told my assistant to take a message because I was far too busy meeting a deadline to take a call. I would, of course, be married to a successful man who traveled for work but maintained his complete devotion to me in the process. We would have a gorgeous home on the beach that was far too big for the two of us, but it would make sense because there would obviously be children in it in the distant future. We would start having children when we were 28 and would have 3 by the time we were 35. I would find the perfect nanny and I would be super mum during my off hours, which would be plenty by then because how hard could raising 3 kids and maintaining a career be? Everything would be perfect and there was no telling me otherwise without getting a hearty belly laugh directed at you.

In reality…

I parted ways with my high school sweetheart when I was in my early 20’s. Neither of us were successful and both were still in college. We lived with a good friend of ours in a 2 bedroom apartment and we all worked harder than we were paid and juggled ridiculous school schedules. I met my now husband shortly after that. He was a very good looking guy but was wildly irresponsible and partied way too much for my taste. He lived across the hall from me in the house I was moving in to in just 2 months. I had decided that, while he was definitely attractive enough to justify a tiptoe across the hall in the morning over, he was NOT someone I was interested in anything long-term with. We became parents by the time we were in our mid 20’s and learned very quickly just how hard raising one child could be, let alone the 3 I had dreamt of for so long. We moved across the country twice before we were 28 and even had another baby in the process. Neither of us were watching the sunrise on our beach front balcony or staring across a busy city from our office windows. There was no traveling for business meetings or perfect nanny (though the one we had for the time we had her was absolutely fantastic and I’m forever grateful to her) to help me be the perfect working mother. I never finished school and retreated to an unsuccessful career in Cosmetology. I loved it but I just couldn’t make the amount of money I needed to in a flooded industry that was overwhelmed by girls 10 years younger than I was. I had a family and was thus very limited to the unpredictable hours that came along with the job. My heart is still a little broken over the loss of what I loved doing but I do feel like it was what was best for my family and I won’t regret it because of that.

Now, though, I have a desk by a window. I have a personal phone with my own extension and personalized voicemail. I have a fax number that’s only available to myself and my direct supervisor. I tick away on my keyboard in my pretty heels and my almost perfectly manicured nails. I would say perfect but I’m so tired at the end of the day that I rarely make it to get a fill done in 2 weeks instead of 3.. or 4. Oops. I don’t have an assistant but that’s on my wish list over the next two years and I have every intention of that wish coming true in that time. I’ll be able to finish school and have it paid for by the company I’m slowly but surely falling in love with working for. They’re pro woman. They’re pro mother. They’re one of the largest employers for members of the LGBTQ community. They’re pro HUMAN and they’re fantastic.

I have 2 fantastically maddening children (and a beautiful, equally as rambunctious princess of a dog) whom I, as Amy Poehler once put, love so much that I want to eat them. Her description of this maternal obsession is the most accurate description I have ever found and, seeing as how I hang off every word she says, I find it to be the best explanation for the love a mother should feel for her children. My husband is as imperfect as he is perfect and thinking now that I thought I would never give him a second look after I defiled him makes me bellow out that same belly laugh that my insanely naïve 18-year-old self used to give anyone giggling at my perfectly planned life. The 4 of them combined drive me absolutely batty. Like, batshit crazy levels of insanity. It’s a wonder I haven’t lost all of my hair and gone completely mad at this point.

But, if surviving restructuring my perfect plan has taught me anything, it’s to always keep enough Merlot to satisfy Tyrion Lannister himself in my pantry and my bottle opener close by.

On that note, it’s time for a refill and to see why my creatures are suddenly so quiet.. If I can ever get this damn dog out of my lap.

AP

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