The Book Of Me: Prompt 57 --Life Chapters

The Book Of Me:  Prompt 57 --Life Chapters   How Did I Get Here? My Amazing Genealogy Journey

If you are not familiar with this wonderful project that was created by Julie Goucher of the Angler's Rest blog, please refer to this link: http://www.anglers-rest.net/book-of-me-written-by-you.html

This week's prompt is - Life Chapters

Is your life divided into chapters?
How has that happened? Has it naturally evolved?
Can you easily reflect where one chapter ends and another begins?
Are there any surprises?
Are those Chapters determined by people and / or places / or significant events?

I would say that I could divide my life in four chapters. They've evolved naturally enough to coincide with geographic moves or phases of personal growth. 

Chapter one:  This would cover when I was born to the point my family moved to Long Island just before my tenth birthday. That time period in my life I had the most contact with my extended family. My grandparents were alive and well and my aunts and uncles lived within driving distance of my family's house in Cambria Heights, NY. For holidays and birthdays, everybody saw everybody. Either my parents, brother and I would visit them at their houses or they would come see us at ours. The family bond was tight. 

Chapter two:  This stage lasts until I graduated from college so it covers the ages of 10 through 22. For me, moving to Long Island meant freedom. The rules were different. There weren't any bars on the windows of our house on Ethan Lane. I could ride my bike off my block. Neighbors would look out for the kids in the neighborhood instead of assuming they were up to no good. It was simply a different experience. This sense of freedom only increased when I went away to college. I finally felt like there was a space where I could develop into my own person. I could figure out what I liked and disliked and not worry about other peoples' opinions of me. This was a great time of self discovery.

Chapter three:  Chapter 3 spans ages 22 through 32.  During this time I decided not to explore a position in accounting, even though I had obtained my bachelor of science in the field. It just wasn't for me. After college, I took a position selling radio advertising to area businesses. That job wasn't for me. I think I lasted only 9 months there but the good thing that did come from it is that I met my husband. I was in retail management for few years and then eventually took a position as unit manager for a call center. Those were the carefree years before marriage and children. When I could sleep in on a day off. My sweetie and I could go away for the weekend on a spur of the moment trip. Ah...memories (Sigh.) These were my "on my own" years. I could at last declare to world that I was a grown-up. Sadly, these were also the years that many of my loved ones transitioned over to become one with the ancestors. 

Chapter four:  This chapter should be called Motherhood and Marriage. This covers from age 32 to the present. As we all know, when you become a mom, everything changes. Boy, there were changes! I had all the books. I did all my reading and studying beforehand. Still, you know how it is. You can never be fully prepared for what happens once they place that baby in your arms. The hardest thing by far was sleep deprivation. Thankfully, my kids are older now so they only rarely wake me up in the middle of the night. They almost killed me though from lack of sleep when they were ages 3 and under. I love them to pieces and wouldn't change a thing. They are the reason I was put hear on this earth. I feel that my husband and I have grown so much since we've become parents. We had our struggles but we remained committed to each other. We are now on the other side of all that, closer now for having gone through it. 

Now as I'm writing this it feels like that in the past year I've begun a new chapter. We'll call it Chapter 5 for now. I have had a mental shift. I am much more compassionate with myself. I am an introvert and I feel that I can wear that badge proudly. I don't have to pretend to be something that I'm not. I think I have just started to step into the space of the me that I have always wished to become.

© 2014, copyright Andrea Kelleher. All rights reserved.

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