This Is Us

If you clicked hoping to find a recap of an amazingly sad episode of the show that has emotionally wrecked most of my mom friends…you’re going to be really depressed (or depressed even more because seriously, everyone who watches that damn show is now depressed by it – but then they tell me it’s the best show EVA. Nah, I’ll pass).

This is about us – meaning my family. Now, I know what you’re thinking. Here comes the obligatory Thanksgiving post about being thankful for…my family, my kids, my parents, my life!

Not exactly.

This is a post where I get to express my thanks for what DIDN’T happen or what I DON’T have. You see, this is not how I expected my life to be…AT ALL. Not even close. I say that with zero exaggeration.

In fact, here is what I knew to be true when I was 28 years old.

  1. I wasn’t going to get married. Found it a bit stupid. Paper doesn’t make it real. If you love me – just love me. Putting something on paper doesn’t make it more real. It just wastes paper.
  2. I didn’t want kids. Nothing to do with them. I couldn’t stand it when someone would give me a kid to hold (by the way, this wouldn’t last long because I would hold “it” like a football until they became terrified enough to know I wasn’t supposed to be holding it.). I didn’t have compassion for young moms on planes with screaming kids and refused to sit next to a family with young kids at a restaurant. It wasn’t my vibe.
  3. I was NEVER moving back to Ohio. I grew up in a small town in Ohio and by the age of 10, I was dying to get out. By the time I made it to Chicago, I thought the only other place I could stomach would be New York. I was a big city girl at that point and wasn’t going back.
  4. My job meant everything to me and always would. I loved working, loved climbing the proverbial corporate ladder and nothing (or no one) was getting in my way of complete world domination.
  5. I would never drive again. Yes, you read that correctly – after living in Chicago for 11 years, I was dead set on never steering a car again. I loved public transportation (or taxis) and was never going back to being constantly lost.

Flashforward 14 years later – and every single thing I wanted to happen – did not. And I am so very thankful.

I married a saint who doesn’t try to change (or save) me and who gave me two children who have transformed my life and softened my cold, hard heart. I boomeranged back to Cleveland 10 years ago and have fallen in love with this amazing city. I am still a bit career-obsessed, but I no longer freely throw people off the ladder I am trying to climb. I make room on each rung (preferably for another female). And I’m now driving – not terribly well – and getting by just fine. And I’m loving the ability to navigate through my new normal.

So, as I sit down to devour some turkey today, I can’t wait to look around the table and be thankful for what I don’t have. I feel incredibly lucky that no one upstairs listened to me when I loudly and proudly made confident claims of what I would never do.

The gift of unanswered prayers is what I cherish most today.

Happy Thanksgiving!

About author View all posts

Amy Martin

Amy Martin is an avid conversationalist and insomniac (averages about four hours a night) who craves engagement online and off. She’s often blogging or speaking about ways to develop your personal brand to companies and leaders in Cleveland. When she isn’t focused on her day job, she is running her own consulting agency, Hyperthink! She is passionate about mentoring other women and hugging her kids (who are too old to appreciate the affection) and she resides in Westlake with her husband, who still cannot fully explain what she does for a living. Amy is usually smiling and has an awkward obsession with “Murder, She Wrote” and incredibly unrealistic mystery shows.

3 CommentsLeave a comment

  • Thank you for sharing this post. I can relate to it well. No matter how hard the lesson, I have come to learn that there is a silver lining in even the toughest of unanswered prayers. The best unanswered prayers allow me to learn more about myself, discover something new or find love in the form of another person, passion, etc. Unanswered prayers are answered prayers, just not the answers we are anticipating, I think. Thank you again; one of my favorite posts ever.

  • This is such a clever post. You have a beautiful family and we’re glad to have all of you in Cleveland!
    Thank you for a new perspective on what we can be thankful!

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