Saturday, December 3, 2011

Drive Fast and Eat Cheese

"Life is either a daring adventure or nothing." ~ Helen Keller

I have an adventurous spirit. I was an exchange student in high school and spent my senior year ten thousand miles from home. I've hiked, I've rappelled, I've snorkeled. I've jumped out of an airplane at 14,500 feet. Why 14,500 feet? Because the rest of the group jumped at 12,000 feet. I've slept under the open sky in the Australian outback and awoken by a wallaby licking my toes. I've been chased through the New Mexico desert by a rattle snake. While spelunking in Illinois, my face shared the crevasse in a rock with a massive spider. I've been rescued from a drunken crowd by security while onstage playing music on an American college campus, and I've recorded with a former Beatles producer. I've been sprayed in the face with Windex by a Maori in New Zealand, and I've accidentally started a small fire on a plane in Japan. (They're very forgiving.)

My adventures haven't always been about seeking the thrill. And, I'm not always smart. I signed a marriage certificate as a teen because I thought it was the perfect ending to a fairy tale. And it was. The ending.

In the workplace I've had normal jobs, and I've had jobs that got the response "I've never seen a girl doing _____!" Those have been my favorite. Girl bass player, girl pizza guy, etc. It invites adventure. I'm not after danger. I've always been street smart for a white girl from the burbs; my Dad made sure of that. He taught me the dangers that lurk and how to watch out for them. Good thing, because I've never been tough. I've got tattoos and piercings, but that doesn't mean I'm tough - it means I shouldn't allow myself to get bored.

Which brings us to the present... today I looked up "adventure" using the dictionary app on my iPhone. Granted, I'm on day 8 of bronchitis, so I'm not quite myself. But, let's face it - no matter how sweet the sweet parts of motherhood are, it still did to me exactly what I was afraid it would. It made me boring. The overwhelming desire to protect not only this innocent little being I was given, but also her only mother, has my hands planted firmly at ten and two o'clock. The big adventure in my life is laundry. I enjoyed the miracle of pregnancy. I accepted the challenge of infant care with no prior baby knowledge and came out victorious. I navigated the minefield of toddler dangers, and stuck to my guns through the "2's". Now, we have a routine. Stability. Exactly what I've been trying to build. Yet, all I want to do is drive fast and eat cheese.

So, this is my new challenge. I'm older, wiser, more mature, and have good reason to wear a helmet at this point in life, but I'm definitely seeking my next adventure. Stay tuned to see where all this leads...