Seven Year Itch
I'm not about to reveal any juicy gossip information about my marriage. My marriage is well passed the seven year itch at coming really close to year sixteen and twenty-one years together. Nope, this is more real for me than that. I've noticed a trend in myself this year while exploring my unsettled feelings. Every seven years, my life seems to take a huge turn. We've been back in the mountains and attempting living in this lost place for seven years this next month. My body, mind, and heart is telling me it is time for something new.
There's a little bit of basis for this feeling I'm having.
Austrian philosopher and teacher Rudolf Steiner created a theory of human development based on seven-year cycles that were associated with astrology. According to his theories, humans experience changes physically and mentally every seven years. - The Seven-Year Itch: Fact or Fiction by Jennifer Nagy
I work with Steiner philosophy every day as I educate my daughters. He was definitely on to something. I am not the woman I was when we moved back home. I'm in a big transitional phase of my life. I'm coming out of the fog of new motherhood and wondering what is next for me.
My husband is doing well in his work. In fact, he's so busy that my time with him is limited. I tallied it up (Yes, I did.). He's home for about 30-35 waking hours on the average week. The 2-3 hours we have with him on Tuesdays-Saturdays are in the mornings. I'm getting breakfast, preparing for school, straightening up, then, seeing him off to work. We often don't see him again until the next morning as we are in bed by the time he comes home. His off days are filled with running errands, tending the girls, and mowing the yard. We're so beat there's a lot of Netflix watching thrown in there as well. He's thriving in his work though, as hard as it is. He's consumed by it, loves it, and is wildly dedicated. If I'm honest, I'm kind of envious. I'm not envious in a jealous kind of way, but in the way that wonders if I could follow dreams and come out ahead.
I worked while getting my master's degree and he got his. I taught public school. He also went through his tattoo apprenticeship at this time. Then, I began having my babies. Now, I have no more babies in the plans. I'm ready to grow with my daughters. I want to chase dreams again. It is funny though, I seem to have gotten lost in all of this supporting. I'm in an odd place. In all my unsettled rushing mind, I didn't realize that it is up to me to make changes for myself. I've expressed my desires to John, and he has listened, but he's in his own dream and cannot attend to mine. I've lamented to friends, probably more than I should have, about monotony and lonesomeness. Finally, one of them shared with me that she had recently realized that if change is to be had, it was up to her to go after it.
For the last ten years, I've been a stay at home mother. I've learned to cook awesome food. I've been working on the balance of teacher and mother as the same role. I have opened my lap and arms even when I was the one wanting to be held. All of life has revolved around this family I have made, and supporting them in all that they do with all of my loyalty. As much as I know I'm loved, and I sometimes feel appreciated, I know that if I want my life to be more balanced and for my talents to be put to use, I have to seek the opportunities and welcome the idea of rearranging what I thought my life should look like at this time.
I have to find the adventure. I have to chase my own dreams. I have to find my own way through the darkness. I cannot expect more support than I already have. I know how to make sacrifices, but now it is time to sacrifice stone chiseled ideas rather than hopes and fulfillment. My daughters deserve to see me thrive on every level. What meaning will it have if I tell them that they can be whatever they want to be, if they see me lay down my chances? In the family I have created for myself, I've laid the foundation for going forward. Now, it is time to try it out and see what happens. I cannot fear the change that will lead me to the next thing.
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Kelli Hansel Haywood is the mother of three daughters living in the mountains of southeastern Kentucky. She is a writer, weightlifter, yoga and movement instructor, chakra reader, and Reiki practitioner.