Well. Here I am. Pushing 40 years old (in 10 months), and I have no clue what I want to be when I grow up. Maybe I am already supposed to be a grown up, but sometimes it is clear I missed the memo.
There is a distant memory from childhood, where I really wanted to be a Marine Biologist (and sail on the “Voyage of the Mimi” with an adorable, young Ben Affleck to study humpback whales) – but I don’t have the same dream today. I still love the ocean – but science & math…. I have never been one of those women who has a clear professional vision or goal. I never set out to be some highfalutin boss lady. Don’t get me wrong, I am good at what I do. I have built a successful career so far. So what the heck have I been doing for the last 20+ years, and how did I get where I am today?
So let me start by stating…. I have a long term, lofty dream – and I am working on making it a plan. But that isn’t what I am sharing today. Today I am talking about finding my next adventure (you know, to finance the dreams). I want a job. I need to work. I need to feel productive. I need to contribute to my family – really… I don’t know how to let others take care of me.
I have had amazing opportunities throughout my career to train & work with some of the best organizations world wide. The title I have carried most often the past 20ish years is Program Manager. That same title has had multiple meanings across multiple organizations.
I have been parts of companies that have seen tremendous growth and devastating loses. I’ve been part of acquisitions, closed down facilities, and I have been downsized right out of a job more than a few times. Each time has been a new learning experience, and no matter how painful or scary – it has meant personal growth.
I am a problem solver by nature. And a “people-pleaser” to a fault. I love understanding what people need and figuring out how to make it happen. Primarily I love building relationships with people – customers, internal team, CEO, janitor…. they are all people. They all have a voice, and all have a stake in the success of an organization or project.
I love to learn about new things. I never went into manufacturing with a burning desire to learn how to manufacture amazing, beautiful product from flat sheet metal and hardware – but I learned all that I could. I soaked up the knowledge of as many people around me – because it made me better at my job. It built relationships with every person on the team, and it made them invested in the success.
And there is this…. I don’t have a degree. I know. Shocking. I have been working my ass off and having a very successful career, but never finished a degree. It is amazing how 20+ years of experience means less to employers than a degree. But I have missed out on amazing opportunities because of this little (huge) fact. I am not opposed to getting a degree. I am at a point in life where I can see it happening…. but reference the start of this story – I don’t know what I want to be.
My boys are getting older – they will hit double digits in 13 days *sigh*. They won’t want me involved in all the school stuff as they head to middle school and beyond. They would rather go places with friends’ families than with me…. Sure, they have loved having me home the past couple of months while I figure this out – but we may not survive the summer. Seriously. Not without some day drinking.
I want a job where I can make an impact on people. Make their lives a little brighter. I want to be a part of something GOOD. A company I can respect. A company with values and leadership that I am proud to be a part of. I would love a work culture that doesn’t care if I have some purple color in my hair or tattoos… because they know that it is just a part of me.
Me. Wonderfully flawed, mistake making mom – just trying to save the world.
There are a lot of great opportunities out there. I am thankful that I am given some time to consider my options and choose. That is my word of the year. Choose. You can choose to be happy, or you can choose to be miserable. You can choose how you respond to the world, even if you can’t always choose what happens. But there is always a decision to make. You always have the power to choose to be the best you.
(the beautiful watercolor art was done by my amazingly talented friend Stacey Wilson)
So, if you see me running around town like a chicken with my head cut off…. now you know why. I am trying to figure out who I want to be and how to get there. I am sure the right path will appear soon, but I’m doing the best I can for now. Try to figure out how to turn my dreams into plans and be the best me I can be along the way.
So – What do you want to be when you grow up? And when are we officially grown up? Ugh….
#CrazyAsAMother #OneMistakeAtATime #MomOfTheYear
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