My best friend dropped the class we were going to take together today. I was proud of her for doing what she needed to do but of course I was bummed. It was a continuation of a seminar class we took last quarter and because we had to travel to Irvine for it, we had lots of time in the car to talk, plus consulted daily throughout the quarter. We hadn’t taken classes together since 1988 when we were theatre students at UCSD. For a few months, we got to be “kids” together again in school and people asked us if we were sisters like they always did when we were in college. I was aware the whole time that it was priceless. An opportunity not to be taken for granted.
My best friend and I lead very different lives. She is married with two kids and has been with her husband since we were in college. I am single with no kids and have had a string of relationships that have never lasted terribly long (with the exception of one). For a long time I worried that I was somehow a freak of nature because I hadn’t hit the mile stones all my other friends had hit. I surely was the Ugly Duckling that somehow did not fit in. But now I just see that God has special plans for all of us. To compare our lives with others is absurd. It’s like comparing apples and oranges. We all have unique personal histories and destinies.
The reason my friend had to drop the class was because of conflicting commitments: Computer programming, homeschooling, leading a band, being a wife and mother. Somehow she pulled all of that off last quarter and still got A’s in her two classes but it was too much. School isn’t going anywhere and she’ll resume but right now, it’s too much for her.
School is a lot for me too. I have to work to support myself and pay off my first graduate degree while wanting to fully embrace my studies, maintain A’s and get scholarships. But last night, I realized I have an advantage. When I came home I thought, “Thank God, I’m not married. My poor husband would find me so boring. All I do is work and study.” The only way I’d want to be married right now is if I was madly in love with my husband and didn’t have to work and go to school simultaneously. Otherwise, I’d just be too grumpy and stressed. And it showed me, God has plans for us. And somehow, it all works the way it’s supposed to.
So my road is one a little less traveled than the regular route but as I felt my friend’s struggle – wanting so badly to do it all – I realized, we all struggle with the paths we’ve wound up on. As my cat sits on my lap and I love him like a child, I know I would have made someone an amazing mother. I remember taking care of my friend’s son when he was a baby and just adoring every moment we spent together. And how being a nanny for three boys was one of the happiest years of my life. But I also love coming home and studying and having the freedom to surf and go to yoga and watch whatever I want to on t.v. And to come home after work and know I don’t have to argue with anyone and can regroup and be with God. After mothering people all day in a different kind of way.
Yes, He has plans for us. For all of us. Plans for us to prosper. No matter what road He puts us on.