The rearrangement of my life version 3.0 could actually be version 4.0 or 5.0. Truth is, I have lost track.
If you're an adult, especially a female adult, over the age of 30, let's say, and no offense to any delightful young people under 30, but if you are over 30, I venture to say you have rearranged (reinvented is another way to say this) your life more than once. In the action of reinvention, you create a new story for yourself. And, within that story, you are in charge of the happy ending.
This past weekend I convinced my husband, Tom, from Old Dog Learning - I had to mention that because I love his focus: helping people get unstuck! Anyway, I convinced him to help me rearrange my Office.
My children will tell you this is a bad habit of mine. I like to rearrange furniture, kitchen Cupboards, and closets, on a regular basis. As teenagers, they were likely to arrive home from school on any given day and be lost in the kitchen. I never admitted to rearranging the cupboards, I enjoyed smiling at them and saying, "What? What are you talking about. The cupboards are as they have always been." Which was, of course, true. The cupboards were the same. It was merely the contents that had been changed from one to the other.
As my husband and I were moving books (there are a lot of books in my office!) and struggling with heavy desks so they would not scratch the floor, I was humming happily, so content and delighted to be moving into version 3.0 of my life. My brain was actually going over the last 14 years. The time I've been with Tom, and been a successful entrepreneur. The time together that involved moving every couple of years, once totally cross-country. The image in the picture above this post was taken outside my window. Nice, huh? It's a little fuzzy because I enlarged it a bit, to better see the mountains.
At any rate, reinventing myself, rearranging my surroundings, changing and morphing and creating a new me, is nothing new, actually.
I started this whole reinventing thing back in my early college days, when I was a student at Delhi, studying Animal Science. Animal science was a new discipline, training folks to be veterinary techs, and I was away from home, on my own, so it seemed natural that I would become a new, different person. So new and different, I changed my name. It wasn't always Yvonne, that's all I'm going to tell you about that, today.
That reinvention was subtle. Not many people noticed it. The college friends I had knew me as quiet, studious, and someone who kept to herself. I didn't party. I wasn't at college to party. Besides, most of the parties were in Oneonta and that was a fair bit from Delhi so you had to hitch a ride, usually in the back seat of someone's car, squished with three or four other people. When I say other people, I mean boys. There were always more boys than girls.
I didn't hunker to that kind of experience, so I kept to myself. I worked on my "Yvonne" persona and went home occasionally, and learned what I thought was needed to get a job as a veterinary technician. Note that I excelled at certain things, like writing, but not so much science. I took to the lab work of the job and that's what I perfected. It took a good bit of time after graduation to finally get a jog in an animal hospital and then to convince them I could be a tech.
But, back to my office. Fast forward from my introduction of Yvonne to the world to 2004 when I was a new entrepreneur and had met Tom and published my book. By then, I had rearranged my life numerous times. I didn't change much until 2004, however. It was then that I at last embraced me, the writer; me, the woman who was independent enough to stand on her own two feet; me, the girl who was now grown up and needed to act it. Until then, I'd been someone else, not a writer; I'd always worked somewhere and never had to do anything on my 'own'; and before then I had clung possessively to my girlhood, as if being an adult was just too much work.
Truth is, being a girl when you are a woman, was the hard part. But I didn't know it then.
And life goes on, as they say. Tom and I created a publishing company that was quite successful. We moved from one suburb to another and then cross country to Colorado. Here in CO we've had three homes.
My office, here in our forever home, is a sanctuary to me. It's more than a place to write blog posts, engage in social media, and build a new business. It's a place to give voice to my love of books, of reading, and of writing. It's a place that says, "Yvonne lives here." It has been a challenge, these two years of living in our home, to make my office what I need it to be, what I want it to be.
And now, at last, I think I have it. Version 3.0 of the office, but version 5 or 6 or 7.0 of my life.
As I walked in the dark room this morning, just shy of six a.m., I took a breath and let the darkness greet me - welcome me. "Come in," it said. "This is your office. This is your room. This is you."
And I turned on the light, and I smiled. And I felt right at home.
We rearrange our lives on a regular basis. Often, it's done without thought. Too often, it's done in response to tragedy or trial, and we cry to the sky asking, why me, when we should quietly go about the rearrangement and take note of the change the Universe is offering us.
Change is inevitable. Learn to like it. Learn to own it. It's a positive way to move forward.
When was the last time you changed your life around? Do tell!