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Motherhood: Mother takes off on spiritual quest

Days of my life over the last 50 years.
Days of my life over the last 50 years.
E. Prada

Oh the trappings of material life! One day it's a white wedding, then a family, a beautiful home in Rancho Cucamonga or any where in San Bernardino county, and then it's time for the youngest of the clan to leave for his first apartment after college. As a mother, standing at the doorway watching the little car being packed up, a small well of tears comes up. Somehow the tears are a bit of pride, and a bit of guilt that a small light of joy is coming up at the thought that I'll now get my house back!

Arenal Volcano Costa Rica
Arenal Volcano Costa Rica
ICT

Yes, after 32 years of mothering, mothers deserve a break. I stand there still wondering what's the next chapter? My husband hugs him goodbye, and walks inside. We close the door, and as I'm turning around, I hear him say: "I'm glad he's on his own. I'm proud of him. It's time he start his life. Hon, will you bring me a cup of coffee? I'm going to the den to watch the game."

Wait a minute! His life? I gave him his life. I nurtured his life. I protected his life. It's time for my life. It is a hard pill to swallow that you reach 50, and your real biological clock is ticking. Women give so much for so many years, and sometimes we let our life slip by, without really thinking about what we want to do with it. So here it is, I have this life, yet I feel unfulfilled. As a therapist, I understand the psychology of it. But facing it personally is very different. So, off we go to attempt weekend getaways, trips to finer stores, exotic vacations, plays and more. Things seem promising. However, there is still a void. The small voice inside saying: "Girl you put everything before your career, before your personal desires, your own likes and dislikes, even your own culture. How much longer to you think you have?"

While it's true most middle aged women in our age group have a lot of security, a husband with an established career, and a network of loving friends and family, these things which are our blessings can also be our trap.

Time continues to move forward, and just when one decides to invest a small fortune in that maple dinning table one couldn't have around with the kids...surprise! "Little Johnny" has to come home because his roommates left and he can't afford it on his own. Fast forward another year... surprise again! "Little Ms. X" gets divorced and comes back home with your adorable two year old grandson.

This is where you can say there is a difference between your run-of-the-mill mothers and your black belt super moms. You see I was a 10th Degree Dan Master Mom, the highest Martial Arts degree possible. I went beyond supermom into raising teenagers while traveling the world on business and simultaneously finishing my Master's degree... and oh by the way I baked cupcakes, and coached soccer, and remembered my twice yearly visit to Frederick's of Hollywood to pick up something to keep my man happy. I cooked, cleaned, and made my husband breakfast in bed. On occasion we babysat the grandkids as well.

Given the above, I write my truth. It is my perspective as the author. I believe women deserve a time away to reflect on their lives. To determine their future based on what's best for them as a woman. Because only a happy, healthy woman can be the best wife, lover, mother, grandma. In this search for meaning I've opted to go on a spiritual quest. This is not Eat, Pray, Love. My time away is not funded, and my story will probably more like Eat, Eat, Eat, Cry, Cry, Cry. I will move to Costa Rica to find answers to the many questions running through my head. I invite you to take this trip with me. I will cry, complain, rejoice, and post pics, thoughts, experiences, and decisions. I have my airline ticket, my books, and my bakeware. I hope you take this journey with me.

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Next up: Telling the kids.