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Monday Musings

The past five years have been a blur of the same thing. I look around and see that my friends have moved forward. They have spouses, babies, mortgages, and careers.

I don’t.

And it hurts.

I feel like I’m in the exact same place I was five years ago. In fact I actually am in the same place I was five years ago. I live in the same apartment, wear the same favorite jeans, drive the same car, and even own the same coffee maker.

What’s wrong with me? Is personal growth unattainable? Or am I just stuck in a rut?

Or worse… is this my life?

Comments

  • You’re in school, you’re almost done with your bachelor’s degree. Change will come after that. Change in the form of you moving out of your apartment into my new house with a pool. In San Diego.

  • Give it another year. You are growing, I promise. You are thisclose to your degree (which many of your friends with spouses/babies/careers are not), you’ve done tons of cool stuff with your writing (that you hadn’t five years ago)and your hair looks more amazing than ever. Also consider these plus-sides: your coffee maker has lasted through three of mine, you save a shit-ton of money on rent vs. a mortgage (not to mention utilities on an apartment vs. a house), you don’t have to do yard work or feel like you’re nagging someone to do it, and you don’t have a car payment (and therefore you can have lots of hot jeans which you didn’t have to discuss/budget/plan their purchase). Also you get to have cold cereal for dinner if you want to!!

  • I love Utah, but I think too many people here have too narrow an idea about how life is supposed to go.

  • at least you didn’t get married in the last 2 years and are already getting divorced. i married the wrong man and so this wednesday i’m having a dinner for myself with my girl friends to celebrate on what would’ve been my two year wedding anniversary.

  • I am going to go with, ‘you are consistent’ and possibly, ‘the green party hero.’ You do not crumble under the pressure to buy the latest and greatest jeans and coffee makers.
    Retro and minimalism is very big in some circles right now, so you are just playing it that way, right? As for your friends and their starter husbands and offspring… You are probably the only one that still has perky boobs, no spit up on your clothes and the freedom to kick the guy out at the end of the day when you are sick of his belching.
    So chin up buttercup! You are going at your own pace and your path is unfolding just as it should. Grab a latte and celebrate your own accomplishments, I am sure they are many!

  • Has it occurred to you that maybe you’re just doing things in a different order than your friends? Would you be able to have a marriage and a Mortgage and a baby and be able to continue your education?? Do you have time to focus on ANY of that stuff when what you really need to focus on is school? The grass always looks greener and there are two types of people in the world: People who complain about what they have and make you feel better about yourself for not having it and those who don’t complain and make you feel bad about yourself. I betcha the ones who don’t complain still have regrets. You just don’t know about them. Before I got married, I used to be utterly jealous of people who had great jobs making great money, who lived in beautiful homes and had healthy children. Then I realized I didn’t actually know anyone like that, I just thought I did. The truth is, sometimes the people who seem to have it all are hiding a whole lot. You may not see the sacrifices. The job that pays well requires a lot of travelling, the perfect looking marriage fails to meet trust standards, the funny husband has no interest in sex and the happy babies aren’t sleeping at night and Mommy is suffering an extreme case of post partum and only anti depressants are helping her cope. These are things some people don’t always share, or say it with such an off handed comment that you don’t think it weighs on them. The bottom line is that people who appear to have it all quite frequently are missing out on some things, they are compromising, sometimes to APPEAR that they have it all. YOU are ensuring that if any of those things happen, YOU will always have YOURSELF. YOU will not wish for a youth you didn’t have because you had babies instead. YOU won’t leave your husband to find yourself. YOU will know EXACTLY who you are and know that no matter what happens, you won’t have to rely on anyone or anything. And frankly, if there are people in your life that have it all and have no regrets, they are either fooling themselves or you have managed to surround yourself with A LOT of rare people. Sorry for the length.

  • Has it occurred to you that maybe you’re just doing things in a different order than your friends? Would you be able to have a marriage and a Mortgage and a baby and be able to continue your education?? Do you have time to focus on ANY of that stuff when what you really need to focus on is school? The grass always looks greener and there are two types of people in the world: People who complain about what they have and make you feel better about yourself for not having it and those who don’t complain and make you feel bad about yourself. I betcha the ones who don’t complain still have regrets. You just don’t know about them. Before I got married, I used to be utterly jealous of people who had great jobs making great money, who lived in beautiful homes and had healthy children. Then I realized I didn’t actually know anyone like that, I just thought I did. The truth is, sometimes the people who seem to have it all are hiding a whole lot. You may not see the sacrifices. The job that pays well requires a lot of travelling, the perfect looking marriage fails to meet trust standards, the funny husband has no interest in sex and the happy babies aren’t sleeping at night and Mommy is suffering an extreme case of post partum and only anti depressants are helping her cope. These are things some people don’t always share, or say it with such an off handed comment that you don’t think it weighs on them. The bottom line is that people who appear to have it all quite frequently are missing out on some things, they are compromising, sometimes to APPEAR that they have it all. YOU are ensuring that if any of those things happen, YOU will always have YOURSELF. YOU will not wish for a youth you didn’t have because you had babies instead. YOU won’t leave your husband to find yourself. YOU will know EXACTLY who you are and know that no matter what happens, you won’t have to rely on anyone or anything. And frankly, if there are people in your life that have it all and have no regrets, they are either fooling themselves or you have managed to surround yourself with A LOT of rare people. Sorry for the length. Don’t even get me started on my theories about Husbands and the relationship I find between what we expect and our love for celebrities, television and romance novels ;)

  • Don’t even get me started on my theories about Husbands and the relationship I find between what we expect and our love for celebrities, television and romance novels

  • Ahhhh, nah man. These things always happen. I’m currently in a similar kinda phase. Except mine has only lasted a year. But I think back to a year ago, and I think about situations I was in then, and situations I am in now. and I think of how differently I handle them. How I’m better equipped to deal with some fundamental aspects of life, and that even though in no materalistic form, or “visible” form, I h ave moved forward. I’ve learnt so many valuable lessons, that I wont ever have to re-learn. Anyway! If anything, you’ve maintained your life, and that’s something to b e proud of. You’re not in any gutter, you’re no whore, you can keep yourself together. And you’re hot! You’re all good chicka. The change you need is just around the corner. :)

  • You’re and independent woman.You don’t need a man to validate you. You are Self-Sufficient.

    And as far as I’m concerned you’re a local Celebrity. One that doesn’t show up at Viva when someone wants an autograph and asks at the In Utah stand but none the less, you’re famous!

    So how’s that for growth!

  • Oh and this is me who posted under Anon. Don’t know who Anon is….

  • I think you’re doing amazing things. Frankly, taking care of oneself–paying as you go for your life–and having fun while you’re at it seems like a big accomplishment, one to be celebrated. Everyone (and I mean EVERYONE, as in me, myself) does this whole comparison thing, and there’s always someone you can look to to say, why am I not (x, y, more awesome)? I just want to say that I admire the panache and style with which you live your life. You are awesome.

  • Anyone who reads your blog sees how much you have grown and how life is changing for you.

    You are stunningly gorgeous, and amazing, and beyond hilarious.

    Everyone feels this way, regardless of situation.

    BUT, I do hate your guts for fitting into the same jeans you wore 5 years ago.

  • (((HUGS))) I know a lot of people who do things at a different pace than everyone else. You’re NORMAL and there’s nothing wrong with you!! Sorry you are having a bad day.

  • Well, at least you still fit into your 5-years-ago-favorite-jeans! That’s an accomplishment.

    Try not to measure your success by the success of others. The bottom line is how you feel about yourself and your life. If you are happy and satisfied, then great! If you aren’t, then you should look within and figure out why you are unsatisfied, then think about what you can do to change that.

  • Darling Sarah,

    How many times do I have to tell you that you, Sarah Nielson, are a big fucking deal! Spouses, babies and mortgages can and WILL wait. Career? I can’t think of a single person with a more impressive resume! You write for 2 publications, 2 blogs and you work for a great agency! And as for the unattainable personal growth you speak of, if college isn’t personal growth than I have no idea what is! Honey you are doing amazing. Don’t doubt yourself. Ever. You inspire me to do more and be better.
    Loves and Hugs!
    Summer

  • I have nothing encouraging to say like everyone else (sorry!) because frankly, I feel exactly the same way you do. But, it’s definitely good to know I’m not the only one out there who feels this way!

  • Before I leave a comment, may I ask a question? If you were given a “free” day, without errands, studies, people to please or respond to, or any other normal constraints, precisely how would you spend it? Begin by waking up…

    This is not about what you could or should do, but about what you would do if you simply followed your nose around all day, feeding your moods and whimsy. It will give you some insight into how you’re doing in life as you are currently living it.

  • Could I gently suggest that you sometimes say that you want a man/husband, etc. But, 99% of the time you say that you don’t. A man isn’t going to want to be with somebody who spends much of their time talking about how dumb men are, at least not for the long term. You don’t have to be needy and clingy, but men do need to feel needed, or you’ll only get men interested in the short term.

  • Ah…sweet mysteries of life…take it from an “older woman”…you’re okay. Actually…you are great! You are living your life in the way it should be. One step at a time on YOUR path…no one else’s. Fuck all the Utah crap about having kids and being married and what is “supposed” to be. You live your life as YOU think it should be. And sure…maybe you feel you’d like to be further along by now, but I truly believe the universe leads us on paths that we may never know the reason for. So, take each day at a time and enjoy it how you may. Some will suck and others will be a joy. YOU are a joy! You give so many others the laughter they need and you offer great insights through your writing and talents. Forge on! You are amazing!! I am glad I happened upon this blog and you!!

  • I’m from the Bible belt of Michigan. I know Michigan is in the “North,” but the area I’m from is SO conservative. All my classmates that I graduated with (and some who graduated after me) are married and most have children or are pregnant. I’m 23 going on 24. That’s effing nuts. To me anyway. My own mother was married at 20 with children by 22. She was married and divorced three times.

    Anyway, sometimes I feel a bit left out of the classmates but I’m really trying to push myself to take my time. After all, I do live with my boyfriend of 5 years and we plan on marriage. Eventually. But for now we’re just really enjoying living in the D.C. area and being young. And still drinking like we’re in college. I’m not ready to let go of that yet. When I think about how much I’d like to be engaged right now, I think about how much I enjoy the bar and then feel better.

    But I also worry that I am moving too fast too young. (Five years of dating isn’t fast but I do feel young for where I’m at.) Then I see gorgeous you, single and fabulous with an AWESOME PINK SCOOTER and I’m totally jealous. And count me in for being jealous that you still fit in your jeans from 5 years ago. I should be able to do that at 23/24 but I’m working on it.

    You rock.

  • P.S. My just-turned 25-year-old sister-in-law just had her second child. She married my brother at 18. She had her first at 21 and couldn’t drink on her 21st birthday. ZOMG! Suck. She wants me to have kids asap. I mean could you imagine being that young and deciding that was it for you? Eventually when/if you have a family, think of all the experiences you’ll be able to pass onto them that those who had kids really young didn’t have.

  • Well, I can’t crap a rainbow like everyone else, but cheer up. ” Even the loosers get lucky sometime.” But, stay away from high school reunions. All they want to do is talk about the glory days, sucessful bastards and bitches.

  • Dude, you guys are the best readers ever. If I could easily jump through the computer and kiss you I totally would. Reading all your kind and supportive comments made me feel much better. Maybe I need to print them all out and have them tattooed on my body so I’ll remember to be happy and positive.

  • I knew it! You do want to kiss me.

  • And I totally wish I was you.

    Do you want to trade? I’ll take your apartment and you can have my mortgage. Deal??

    (ps – the kid stays with me. sorry.)

  • I feel the same way sometimes. I am 33 and still don’t have grown-up furniture, but a hodge-podge of hand-me-downs. This is because my husband and I spent years (and years) in graduate school while many of my friends who started working at 22 are now bona fide adults, with nice houses, kids, etc. Still, I have to think the education is worth it, and I do not think you will regret the experiences you are having. Not to put anyone else’s choices down, but being married with a mortgage and kids at a young age is not for everyone. The “stuff” will come.

  • you have me always, rlo sometimes and wine forever – it’s good to have some consistency in life 5 years or 10 plus years mate

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