Last weekend, Vince and I turned the house upside down, cleaning, fixing, weeding out junk and basically making space for our baby boy, who's due next month. While cleaning, I found these in my cluttery mess:
Yep, these are thank you cards I made myself. In another lifetime, I used to start Christmas shopping by July (I took advantage of the mid-year sales), wrap all the gifts with carefully picked out wrappers by October, and send them out by November to early December.
December is when I start creating the thank you cards. I'd spend a week just designing the card, choosing the right heavy paper, finding new craft materials, slicing up the paper with a sharp cutter, then putting everything together. The glue takes a day to dry (which means we'll have to eat meals in the living room as the dining table is temporarily the drying table) and then I'd spend a a couple of days before New Year's Eve writing personalized thank you's and addressing each card. I'd usually make about 50 cards this way.
Looking at the cards I unearthed, I marveled at all the effort I put into them and remarked to Vince, "My goodness, look at these cards!" And Vince said, "Yes, you used to make them. I loved that about you." And I said, "I used to have more time..."
No, I don't make cards anymore. In fact, I don't even write thank you cards anymore. I just send a text message now, or leave my appreciation on Facebook walls. I just don't have the time anymore! I'm just too busy. But that's how I like it.
When I was 13 years old, I picked up my very first copy of Cosmopolitan US edition. I had read magazines before--Time, National Geographic, Reader's Digest were piled up abundantly in our home--but Cosmo was the title that made me go, "I want to be an editor-in-chief of a magazine one day!"
I became just that 16 years later. By then I had outgrown Cosmo and had developed a fascination with all things Hollywood so OK! magazine was just a dream come true. What I didn't realize was dreams can eat up so much of your life, whether you're making them come true or they already are true. It's actually better now--in the early days of OK!, there were times we didn't go home, we didn't eat, we didn't sleep. Putting together a magazine is a lot of hard work. People just see the glamour; they don't see the stress.
The great thing about dreams that have come true is you love and enjoy them anyway. The work is worth it. I know that Vince prefers those days when I had more time for him--I'd cook dinner every night, we'd go out often alone or with friends. But because he knows I've had this dream since I was a kid, he respects what I do and even encourages and pushes me to do better. He understands me.
But now a baby's coming, and a baby won't understand why his mommy isn't there 24/7. While a lot of women will easily give up their careers for their family, that thought just gives me a drowning feeling. I can't imagine not working. Of course, no one said I have to give up my job, but I'm scared that if I'm successful at my work, I won't be a great mom. And vice versa. Well, it's been said, "You can have everything, just not all at the same time." I want to be good at everything I do! And I want to do a lot! Good luck to me then because the next 20 years will definitely be a challenge!