Yep, that’s me. Diane Lynn Haworth, daughter of Stan and Mildred (aka “Pete”) Haworth, of Warrenton, Virginia around age four and a half. At this young age, I remember being very confident and feeling I had my life all figured out.
I knew exactly what I wanted and was well on the way to becoming a cowgirl ballerina teacher nurse. That was my plan. I would obviously marry a prince, live in a castle and have many babies.
And live happily ever after….
I’m so glad I didn’t know what life would really bring. At this tender age I hadn’t yet begun to doubt my direction or come under the paralyzing self judgement of adolescence. I was still a happy spirit, freely exploring the world.
So glad I didn’t know then that:
- my childhood would be rocked by my parent’s constant health issues which plagued them the rest of their lives
- I’d face many challenging years as a working mom when a record number of women started to change the face of the American workforce
- it would take three tries to find my prince…and I never lived in a castle
- I’d be plagued by fertility issues and weight problems throughout my life
- I’d experience years of abuse, fear, loneliness and overwhelm
I’m glad I didn’t know all that then. I understand now that a crucial part of our life is the way we learn to navigate the boulders on our path. The truths we discover about ourselves and our world are the treasures of a life lived through challenge. We constantly face hurdles and either keep creating the same obstacles throughout life, or find a way around, through or over them.
I’m also glad I didn’t know that:
- my kids would be my biggest joy in life and that every day with them as children, and now as adults, presents me with new opportunities for ever deepening love and happiness
- that the pain in my marriages ultimately gave me the biggest opportunity for deep, soul growth and I’m genuinely grateful for the men who were my teachers
- dealing with my parents’ ongoing health issues led to critical life lessons in patience, compassion and surrender
- accepting my body and the aging process is a rewarding journey when the gifts of the experience are embraced
- the work I love to do, spiritual life coaching, didn’t even exist when I was a kid
- love really is the answer to every life problem
I’m glad I didn’t know the twists and turns my life would take. My experiences are often clouded by what I expect to be “easy” or “hard,” “good” or “bad” ones. Not knowing allows reactions to be more real, the lessons can be learned at a deeper level and genuine joy can be even more expansive.
Now at age 60, I feel more like that little four and a half year old girl than I ever have. With my eyes and heart wide open, I believe I can do anything. Not because I don’t understand how life works, but because I do…or I’m at least starting to.
There’s time to be a cowgirl ballerina teacher nurse if I want to…I’m open to the surprises yet to come.