Every little girl's dream is to get married. What they might not realize is that in order to make all of the best parts of the wedding celebrations happen, she needs an incredibly generous and dedicated collection of friends and family by her side. I am lucky to have that amazing compilation of people in my gifted life.
LIfe is a bit different for me these days. My life in New Zealand is simple, sustainable, and to be honest, pretty detached from the outside world. I'm not living in need of anything though, that's for sure! I have a roof over my head (a pretty nice one I must say!), a computer, clothes in my closet and all of the basics I need to live a comfortable life. I just don't have that many extras. I don't have things I don't use. In fact, I have a rule: if I don't use it in 6 months, I get rid of it. And I hardly ever buy material things brand new. I'm proud of myself…I like it that way now. It wasn't always that way though.
As a girl, I always longed for material things so I could fit in with the cool (rich) kids. I wasn't rich though, or so I thought! What I failed to realize was that I was rich in balance and love, the two most important abundances in life.
My parents always gave us everything we needed. We had a beautiful home, a pool, nice clothes and a gifted lifestyle surrounded by wonderful family. I wanted a bit more, so I got a job as soon as I was legally able, and started saving money to buy the clothes that would gain me the admiration of my peers. I wanted a car, my own car, so I worked hard to get it. I was frugal and bought designer surplus items at department stores and second hand when I could find them, and always consigned my clothes I wasn't wearing to have a little bit of spending money for my new purchases. All of these things taught me the value of money and hard work and motivated me to to do well in life and to find a means to get what I thought I "needed" to survive life as a teenager at Marshfield High. It was a fabulous time of discovery and individuality. I learned a lot about what I was capable of during those years. They were some of the best years of my life, and I don't regret one second of it!
While I'm still the same girl at heart, my needs have changed now. I have simpler tastes and more of an appreciation for where things come from and how they got to us. I would much rather buy at yard sales and thrift shops and be stoked about the bargain I got. Gone are the days that I would even consider buying a $48 tee shirt because it said A&F on it. I'm not saying I don't like nice things, because I certainly do. I'm only human! I love getting dressed up and going out to share a nice meal with family or friends at a fancy restaurant. I love window shopping in expensive stores even if I wouldn't consider buying anything. I love looking at magazines and daydreaming about what my kitchen and living room would look like if I could afford to buy brand new furniture. I went and tried on a $7,000 wedding dress with no intention of buying because I thought it would be a fun! Hell, we even took a limo into Boston for the day! Talk about over the top! But I loved it. I loved every second of it. Herein lies the conundrum. I think I've mislead people to think that I need those things to be happy.
I think I just have two separate lives now, and I'm okay with that! It's kind of like having an apartment in the heart of the city and a holiday house in the country. The interesting part to me is the people I consider the closest can easily cross over from one of those lives to the other. They are either family, or I've chosen them for that reason I think. It's important to be able to adapt to situations in life and to fully understand the cliche "when in Rome"! To not accept that is to miss out on some of life's little gems. So why do I feel kind of like a hypocrite?
I'll tell you why. I was spoiled for the last 2 weeks in America, and I loved every second of it! I had manis and pedis, got taken out to dinner more times than I can count, and got whisked all over the state to spend quality time with people that made an extraordinary effort to make time for me. The women in my life particularly have astonished me. I'm amazed at their loyalty and ability to never let me down. They made it all happen regardless of what was going on in their lives. Whether it be post-op pain, financial hardship, small children in need of attention, husbands who probably felt like they were put on the back burner, demanding work schedules and most of all, distance! A lot of gas money and travel commitments went into spending as much quality time with me while I was home as possible.
I am eternally grateful for these wonderful women in my life, and it makes me miss them. To know how much they love me. To know that they would put their lives on hold no matter what the consequences. To know that they would go out of their ways to put a smile on my face and a tear in my eye, is simply extraordinary. I think I must be the luckiest girl in the world. I think I must have been born with a horseshoe up my ass ;)
This is a tribute to all of the women in my extended family. Thanks for spooling me rotten and for keeping traditions alive in our family. Thanks for loving me. I love you more and will never forget all that you have done to make me feel so special and so loved.