Life is ... and then The End.

Yesterday, my fourth graders filled out these pink, frilly heart-shaped papers that had LOVE IS... in big, bold letters splashed across the top. The Pep Club is doing something with them, and me, ever the team player, was determined to make sure we got them done.

My FAVORITE response, by far, was:

"Love is the thing where you fall in love and be a boyfriend or girlfriend. And then you have kids. The End."

If only it were that easy! I mean, from just about everyone's lips to God's ears, right?

It occurred to me the other night, while I sat at my dining room table eating dinner with the cat sitting across from me -- because she feels that A.) She's human, and as such, B.) She deserves her own chair at the table -- my glass of wine, my quiche, my salad, my book, that perhaps, I've gotten way too comfortable with my singleness. And perhaps, this is a good thing, but maybe, just a little bit, it's a bad thing.

I used to have a rather large social life ... parties and get-togethers all the time. Shopping trips with girlfriends ... hang-outs at the different eating/drinking establishments and coffee shops. My calendar was full.

I don't do that any more. What I've come to realize is that I live like a hermit, and I am sorta getting use to it ... and like it ... just a little.

Now, my life revolves around work and laundry and dinner and lunches and picking up and putting away and doing graduate school work and picking out clothes for the next day and falling into bed finally, and then, realizing, that I have the EXACT same thing to look forward to all over again.

It's monotonous, and I used to HATE monotonous ... I mean, I still do, sorta ... but now, maybe not.

When I was in fourth grade, I used to have a paper route, back when it was safe to have a paper route. I befriended an elderly woman on my route, and for a matter of a year, I would ride my bike over to visit with her every so often. I grew older, and sadly, forgot about her as far as it related to taking time out to visit her, and she died ... more than likely when I was in middle school or high school.

I used to feel so badly for her. She didn't really have anybody, she told me. She just got up and did her chores and watched TV, and waited for the occasional visits ... from people like me. And at 10 years old, that broke my heart. I knew I didn't want that ... I wanted my life filled with lots of things to do and lots of people to do them with ...

While sipping my wine, reading my book, and munching on my quiche, it began to slowly seep in that at 12 days away from 39, I AM that elderly woman. I have just gotten a head start on my hermit lifestyle ... granted, it's about 50 years earlier, but hey, better early than late, right?

Now, before you start googling depression websites and frantically look for my cell number to call and stage an intervention, please read my electronically proverbial lips. I AM NOT DEPRESSED ABOUT THIS. I'm not wallowing in self-pity. I'm just realizing that just maybe ... quite possibly ... This. is. it.

There's no exciting fire works and grandiose ends to perfectly, exciting days. The monotonous cycle of life may be it, and maybe ... just maybe, I'm becoming comfortable with this shift change in my imagination of what Life (capital L) is really all about ...


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