Don't worry, you'll get your race recap soon...hopefully. But I'm currently in the midst of a quarter life crisis seeing as I've just hit a quarter century old and I'm really starting to see how hard it is to be a woman sometimes. Sure there are all kinds of benefits and I definitely wouldn't change it for the world. But on the other hand, a woman's accomplishments always seem to have a slight negative undertone.
Over the weekend I did my second half marathon (duh) and got a lot of positive feedback and comments regarding this accomplishment. When I was accepted into grad school I got some positive feedback and when I told people about my trip to Peru this summer (did I tell you all I'm going to Peru this summer?) I also received the standard "congrats!" and "good luck!" comments. I appreciate that more than you'll ever know. However, I am constantly being questioned and pressured about babies and marriage. I get accepted into graduate school/run a half marathon/travel the globe and get "Oh that's nice. But when are you getting married?" or "That's good but what about The Colonel (and no, they don't call him The Colonel)?" Or my personal favorite, "Good thing you're getting all of that out of your system now before you get married and have kids." Let me just clarify, my bucket list and personal list of accomplishments does not include marriage or children. It never will. To me and in my life (let's remember before getting all huffy that we're talking about ME, not ALL WOMEN) getting married and having kids aren't accomplishments. I know there are people who have to work at getting pregnant and you certainly have to work at keeping a marriage together and if that's what you want for your life then you should be proud! But that is your life and not mine.
The point is that people can't continue to push their own ideas of success onto others and expect everyone to agree. We all have our own definitions for a successful life and that's how it should be. If success for everyone meant Ph.Ds and tenure track positions we'd run out of jobs quick. If everyone's success came in the form of 4 kids and a dog we'd run out of food (and possibly dogs). Life is a two way street and you never know exactly where the other cars are coming from or where they've been. You don't know if they've had a few flats along the way or been pulled over and held up or if it's been raining and they have the one bad wiper blade. Sometimes you'll pass people and who knows, you may even make a u-turn to follow their lead but remember that you're all in separate cars and that they're in control of their own journey regardless of what you think.