Seven Sentences to 25 Year Old Me

We learned this week that Wayne’s current job is ending on Thursday, March 29. Although we knew the position was time-limited (scheduled to end after the legislative session concluded), I have been surprised by the emotional/anxiety quagmire I plunged right back into.

I thought at some point during my 6 mile trail run/race on Saturday, my brain would let go of the “what if’s” and “how come’s” and “there has to be a way out of this’s.” It didn’t happen. An hour of yin yoga with live guitar helped me have a brief emotional/spiritual escape later that day. Seven and a half minutes (when you added it all up) of planks at core yoga today were so difficult they knocked it out of my mind through the sheer physical exertion.

To give a bit of the backstory, Wayne was informed in August of 2010 that his position was being downsized. The official end of his employment with the legislature was in November 2010. There has been sporadic independent work since then, some very promising job opportunities that fell through, and then over the last few months he was working in the legislative affairs office of a state agency (that position was always slated to end concurrently with session).

I guess if I had a private diary I could pour out my heart and really vent but my blog has become my diary, in a way, even though I apply a lot more filters to it than I would to something that would never see the light of day.

If you prefer “lighter” from me, come back on Wednesday for the latest update on “#stylememarch.” (Week one is here, week two is here, and week three is here.)

I know it’s impossible to go back and re-do history, and how each of us got to the point where we are today. As I was running Saturday morning, I was wondering how I could write about something so incredibly personal without it just being an emotion-dump or something that a potential employer of either Wayne or me would see as weakness. I decided maybe it would work to do a “seven sentences” statement that I would have told 25 year old me if I had the life experience I have now to go by.

As you enter the 2nd quarter century of your life, you need to face up to the ways in which you habitually defer to others who you perceive have more power than you. Being “nice” will smooth some social pathways for you but will also obscure your vision when you need to be blunt, with strangers, as well as with the people you love the most. Things that seem minor now can be the warning signs of ways in which you may “muck up” the bigger things. Paying attention to details can be interesting and informative; putting on a persona of “working hard” and being dedicated will help you make some progress professionally, but your aversion to strategy and your tendency to give the benefit of the doubt will make you “lose,” and despite the “nice,” the “methodical,” and the “sincere” parts of you, you’ve gotta let your competitive side have some victories once in a while. And about money – make sure you learn to talk about it constructively, candidly, and realistically with your significant other; if the two of you have trouble figuring out what part of a weekend trip to put on credit and what to pay cash for, that model is going to repeat itself about much bigger things over the years, and will weigh you down in ways you can’t yet understand. Through all of that, though, your tenacious determination to grasp the merest threads of hope that your faith has to offer will support you. Have those children you want so badly to have; even when you think you haven’t done enough for them, listened well enough to their issues as they grow up, or given them the material things they need/want, they will know even when they can’t acknowledge it that you love them for who they are, because you will have given them the best you have to give.


If you have made it this far, I appreciate you reading my seven sentences.

Whatever your particular belief systems are, I would appreciate your prayers and/or positive affirmations as we deal with this latest phase of “Adventures in Adjusting to Job Loss.”

Cash would work too. {grin}


10 thoughts on “Seven Sentences to 25 Year Old Me

  1. Love the lighter side of your writing, and love this side too! What meaningful thoughts those seven sentences represent…very insightful and moving. My prayers are with you and your family as you navigate down this bend in the road we call life. Thanks for sharing.

  2. Great advice, Paula, no matter the age. Sorry that your lower-stress interlude has ended. Best wishes to Wayne in his job hunt and to the whole family for strength and perseverance. xoxo

  3. Prayers are being prayed for you And Wayne. I was where Wayne is now, a year ago. I also new ahead of time that my job was gone, but it doesn't make it any easier. It is not the fact of losing the job ,.it's the unknown that follows, And Even when you have faith, it is our nature to try And make it all Work by ourselves. Which in most cases just makes you more anxious. I am still adjusting to the unkown future. And I have a new job and shouldn't be anxious. I am glad you can still have some humor and I know that it will all work itself out. Know that you have people all around you that are there for you and for Wayne. Kee up the yoga. I hear it really does relieve the stress!

  4. You have so much courage, strength, integrity and honesty. My teacher and healer David says, “The Universe is impersonal. Life happens in ways we can't understand.” Sending you many prayers and much love trusting that it will all work out. Keep on keeping on and above all – keep breathing. Poses are optional. Much love to you dear friend.

  5. I am sorry to hear about your husband's job loss. You guys will be in our prayers, that he finds a new position soon. Beautiful advice though…the seven sentences idea is a really great one!

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