Avoiding Crisis

a doctor, a lawyer and an indian chief

with 3 comments

When my brothers and I were in college, someone in my family – and because of the complete silliness of it I would venture to say it was my older brother – made a comment to my parents about the fact that they would eventually be the proud parents of “a doctor, a lawyer and an Indian chief.”  The oldest was to be a doctor, I the lawyer and my twin the “Indian chief,” which was just a very interesting way of saying that he would be a politician.  Well, currently the oldest is finishing up his residency, my twin is fully involved in the political landscape of the State that he now resides, and I, well, I’m not a lawyer, nor did I ever want to be one .  In fact, I’m not sure why it was ever assumed I would be, which it was many times by many people (including my own husband).  Instead, I am, for lack of a better term, a “trailing spouse.” Which in diplomat speak means that I follow my husband’s career from an embassy to embassy.  Oh, and I’m also a stay at home mom of two children under the age of 5. 

As a friend of mine so kindly pointed it – this “crisis” that I’m having  is about expectations – the difference between that person that I thought I would become and that which I have become.  Those around me, whether it be family, friends and/or professors, have always had high such expectations of me.  On top of those I always had my own super-high personal expectations.  Regardless, whether it was what others expected of me or what I expected of myself it was always the same – something great.   How then, if everyone around me had such great expectations of me and I myself had, albeit somewhat unrealistic, such lofty personal expectations, did I end up where I am.  When a friend of mine recently found out that I was taking on this writing project she told me how she always wondered how I ended up where I am today – not that where I am is bad or anything.  But for her, my life doesn’t “fit” my personality.  It’s one thing to feel this way, it’s another when someone else points it out.  I have ventured so far from that which I thought I’d be doing with my life that I have to honestly admit, I’m not sure what it is that I was supposed to be doing in the first place or even want I want to be doing right now.  But then again, I guess that this is what I’m trying to figure out.  And so I continue…



Written by nicolemarie

January 13, 2007 at 11:30 am

3 Responses

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  1. It is about expectations, isn’t it?

    It is also because women cannot have it all. We are forced by our biology to compromise, simple as that. The skill of this life is to negotiate those compromises with grace.


    Aphra Behn

    February 2, 2007 at 6:24 am

  2. But I want it ALL! Is that so bad? I know, I know…I’ll only perpetuate the cycle of feeling like a failure because I can’t have it all…it’s just not possible. These days it comes down to deciding what’s really important and what you can easily allow to fall by the waist-side.

    compromise with grace…any one teaching a class on how to do that?



    February 2, 2007 at 8:32 am

  3. Ah no. But yoga might help! The meditation kind not the bendy kind. Zen yoga, if there is such a thing.

    Or get a cat as a role model – no compromsing there, but they are selfish little opportunists and can manipulate situations with supreme grace. Mmmmm. Maybe not – that would be bad for the integrity.


    Aphra Behn

    February 2, 2007 at 9:46 am

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