Monday, May 10, 2010

Book 27: Three Wishes

Once in a while, the Fates conspire to show you something you need to see. Perhaps you've fallen into your life. Maybe you're living someone else's bliss.  Or maybe you simply woke up one day and said, there's more than this,whatever this is.  And you've finally, finally admitted to yourself that while you've been blessed with so many wonderful things, you want still more.  Only now you want the things that you think are going to make you really happy, complete you, finally realize what your authentic self wants.  If you're lucky, you blink your eyes or wave your magic wand or just wake up and do it, and you have this final piece to the puzzle.  Or you're like me. You realize you simply don't know how to begin to get what you want, or even if you deserve what you want.  That's a painful, painful place to be. So you start reading books, to help you figure out how to get this elusive thing that is going to make you happy. You start talking to people who can give you clarity. More important, you listen to what these people tell you.  And then, just when you're ready, more things keep coming into your life to point you in that right direction.  You know, these pesky Fates.
If you've been following this blog, you've seen Finding Your Own North Star and The Happiness Project here.  What I didn't articulate as much with talking about these two books, was how much they impacted me personally.  They started me on a journey that I've been on for the last few months. I have actually spent many wonderful weeks working with someone who helped me change my perspective, question my motivations, face fears, and start thinking about things more positively. As part of that, I've learned that once you open up yourself to thinking about things in a different way, the messages you need to hear seem to find you, no matter what.
In browsing through the shelves at Barnes and Noble Sunday, that's precisely what happened.  I'd picked up several fiction books, and I began meandering through non-fiction and current events. I perused and picked up several titles, reading book jackets, adding some to the basked and returning others to the shelves.  And then I came across Three Wishes. The first thing I noticed is that this memoir was really an intertwined memoir of three women, who co-authored the book.  Carey Goldberg, Beth Jones, and Pamela Ferdinand all lived in the Boston area, and all worked in journalism. They had all had successful careers and had happy, fulfilled lives in so many ways. But each woman was nearing the end of her thirties, and each wanted a baby.  But none had found the right man.  Carey was the first to decide that she would have a baby on her own.  She ended up using a sperm donor.
Of course, once she made the decision to go with a sperm donor, a man comes into her life, and the donor becomes unnecessary. So she passes the donations onto Beth.  And there you go.  Beth meets that right man. So the donations go to Pam, and lady luck strikes a third time.  Of course, not all the paths were easy once the man walked into the picture, and happy endings were not instantaneous. In fact, there were some devastating times before the happy endings. But the journey to happiness itself was an intriguing, sometimes sad, and ultimately heartwarming read.
For these women, the most important thing to them was to become a mother- but not at the expense of everything else in their life.  They visualized it, they planned for it, of course. But they didn’t stop living their life in the pursuit of this goal.  And that is exactly when they got what they wanted.  That was what struck me.  The dream doesn’t have to be marriage and motherhood.  That’s just what it happened to be for these women. It was their pursuing the goal while still living their life that spoke to me so much.
I’ve realized what is important is to give yourself permission to admit what you really want and pursue it.  Because once you do that, once you say that it is OK to want something, and that you deserve to have it, you start opening yourself up to the possibility of receiving it. Although I’ve not taken any huge steps yet, I’m already learning that doing things in my life that fulfill me is going to open me up to many more possibilities.
 Now all these books about people following their bliss seem to be finding their way into my path, whether from a conversation with a random seat mate on a Delta flight, or wandering through the aisles of a bookstore and just happening to pick up a book about people doing the same thing.
Regardless of what your own happy ending might be, this book reads like you're sitting down with friends who are telling you their story, with all its hilarity and heartbreak.  And when you're reading it, you know that no matter how circuitous the journey, these women wouldn't trade it. Because once they opened their eyes to what they wanted, this journey is what led them to precisely where they were meant to be.

No comments:

Post a Comment