Brushing aside (with a dramatic sweeping motion) the dozens of ultimately unimportant mini daily battles I muddle through in a week, I present to you my overarching always-in-the-back-of-my-mind struggles:
Am I doing what I’m supposed to be doing?
I’m not sure if I’m doing what I was put on Earth to do. On good days I think I must be on the right track. On not so good days I wonder how I’m supposed to even recognize the right track if it comes over, introduces itself and vigorously shakes my hand.
Incidentally, this feeling of having a greater mission isn’t an ego thing. It comes from a fundamental sense of un-religious faith, and I think it applies to everyone.
What about my parents?
As an immigrant, a part of you always wonders if you’re going to go back home, even if when you do you know home is no longer there. And I know that my primal assignment was to make my own way. But I think a lot about the (barely imaginable, practically unbearable) day my parents will no longer be able to take care of themselves.
The fact that my husband thinks a lot about the very same thing and that his parents live 5,948 miles in the opposite direction compounds the complexity of the situation. (Early on, we wrote and signed an indelible, invisible, life-binding cosmic contract that we weren’t going anywhere without the other, ever. This unfortunately excludes short business trips. Apparently, I neglected to read the small print.)
Should I have kids?
Kids change everything, and I’m so, so happy with my life just the way it is. But, a childless life, stretching far into forever? Arg. I just don’t know. And of course, in this not knowing limbo, I am running out of time.
By the way, the fact that you think your own kids are the center of your universe and that you feel they make everything worth anything doesn’t help me at all. Struggles are deeply personal. Only I know what will work for me, and as I find what that is, I won’t impose it on you.
So, what next?
I've resolved to follow my mother's advice and take it all one day at a time. And, to follow Yogi Berra’s advice: “When you come to a fork in the road, take it.”