Friday, 30 August 2013

School Reunions - how far have we all come?

This weekend I will be making a trip down memory lane as I visit my hometown for a school reunion. It has been half a lifetime since I left school, and although my life has changed in many ways in those years, the idea of a reunion prompts all sorts of questions about what I have achieved since school ended all those years ago.

Although I didn't have a firm career path in mind when I left school, I did have very clear ideas about what sucess looked liked. I have never been very materialistic, and success was never defined for me in terms of flashy cars and designer clothes, but if you had asked my 16 year old self whether a 32 year old stay at home mum of 2 was successful, I would probably have said NO.

But that is exactly what I am now. But the thing is, my definition of success has changed a lot over the years, depending on what stage my life was at and what I was doing at the time. I have been to university, travelled the world (well some of it anyway!), achieved (some) success in my career, given up that career to do a job I loved then finally given up my job to raise my daughters. At the time, each.of these things felt like a sucess.

So how will I answer all those questions from longlost schoolmates about what I am doing now?

Well, I am happy and healthy, as are my two amazing spirited daughters. I think that I am doing a pretty good job and hopefully I will feel confident enough in this to answer the barrage of questions about my life. Hopefully.  And will I be able to resist the urge to judge the success of others. Well, hopefully, because if there is one thing I have learned since leaving school, it's that there is no one definition of success. Success means different things to different people, depending on their lives, as long as they are happy. So no matter what paths our lives have taken, we have all come a long way since school.

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