I think that 2014 may be my year of disruption. I want to have an adventure and take my loved ones along with me for the ride. Crazy, you say? Perhaps.
I am probably the most responsible, stay-the-course, do-the-right-thing person you have likely never met, and I admit that even I don't quite understand this pounding drumbeat in my head telling me to throw my pick-up sticks in the air and see where they land. I'm 64, not 24, and really don't have time to erase life mistakes if I make them this late in the game. Still, the temptation is there to just rewrite my script.
My desire for something new isn't borne from discontent. I have a good life with kids who are by-and-large happy and a husband who's in it for the duration. I love my job and the creativity it provides. My personal problems don't generally overwhelm me; my car starts every morning; my pantry is full; the roof isn't leaking, although the washing machine was last week but that has since been repaired. At the moment, I have no complaints worth airing. And I get that that puts me in blessed place. I am filled with gratitude, trust me.
So what on Earth has come over me that I have this near-constant fantasy of changing everything and turning my life upside down? When life is good, aren't we supposed to stop looking for better? Isn't recognizing when you are content the key to being happy? I think I even once wrote that, so it must be true.
Yet in the past few months, I have fantasized about:
* Moving to Hong Kong so that my Chinese children can see more Asian faces.
* Moving to a shack on the beach so I can surf like Gidget, if Gidget was 64.
* Moving to Des Moines or someplace else I've never been where I believe people are nicer.
* Moving to Panama or one of those countries where retiring ex-pats say they love living (until they get sick and then come running home for treatment).
* Moving into an RV because I need to figure out this downsizing thing once and for all instead of just talking about it.
* Changing my kids' schools to some place with more rigorous academics based on their most recent test scores.
* Changing my kids' schools to some place with less rigorous academics based on the same thing.
* Homeschooling my kids because I know in my heart there is no perfect school for them.
* Taking my kids on a year-long trip around the world where I know they will learn more than in any school, including a homeschool.
* Volunteering at my local animal shelter.
* Rescuing six more dogs and becoming one of those crazy dog-rescuing people.
* Doing something seriously important that changes lives instead of writing to amuse them.
* Starting my own startup. I have a million ideas, just no millionaire to fund them.
* Writing a book about how I totally disrupted my life for unfathomable reasons and then hope that I'm called an "inspiration" instead of a "fool."
Yes, many plans means no plans, and so I continue to wake up to an alarm clock each day and drive my kids to the school bus that takes them to what some days seems like a wholly inadequate, lacking in Chinese faces, school. No surf bum, no Panama, no Des Moines either. Just the same old, same old.
What is really fueling this basic flight fantasy? The strange part is that I don't actually hope to find better; I just want to disrupt for the sake of disruption. I want an adventure before I am too old to want adventures.
I want to stop analyzing, measuring, weighing all the arguments pro and con and I just want to disrupt. But since at the end of the day, it's to thine own self be true, I will just satisfy myself with writing about it. Unless of course there is a millionaire reading and he'd like to hear my start-up ideas.