Happy Birthday;or What Now?

December is my birthday month and Sunday is my birthday. This is my personal “new year” and traditionally the time when I reflect the past year and plan for the fresh one on the horizon.


Photo by Danielle MacInnes on Unsplash


As you know, I’ve had lots of time on my hands lately (ahem) due to unemployment and now surgery/recovery.  This has allowed me to focus on being open to any insight about the last year and any suggestion as to what I should be doing next with my life. 

Frankly there isn’t much coming to me from either direction.


Photo by Richard Balog on Unsplash

Honestly, in many ways this last year seems like a waste. I need to spend more time looking more closely at what transpired, but at first pass there isn’t much to celebrate personally or professionally. Especially professionally.

Other than surviving. #theresthat

I didn’t accomplish anything that I am particularly proud of — in fact just the opposite. 2018 has been professionally demoralizing and destabilizing and I feel even more adrift now than I did this time last year.

And that’s saying something.


Photo by Carl Heyerdahl on Unsplash



I am starting my 51st year on this planet deeply thankful to be here.  Many of my friends and loved ones are not, so I am appreciative of that.  And the awareness that I’m appreciative makes it even sweeter.

But as I look towards 51,  I wonder, “What’s next?”

People want to be helpful. They ask me, “Well Jessica, what do you want to do?”

But I don’t have an answer. At least not an answer like we are taught to have, or that I’ve had in the past, concrete answers like:

“I want to be a ballerina.”

“I want to be a child psychologist.”

“I want to be an Olympian.”

“I want to be a writer.”

“I want to make $100k a year.”

Now? Honestly, I just want to putter in the garden and read and start writing more again and meditate regularly.

I want to be a better friend, a better parent, a better lover.

I want to be present with those around me.  I want to help the greater good in some meaningful way,  but I don’t know what that is.

Apparently, I don’t know a heck of a lot more than I do know.

I also know none of that ^^^ pays the bills!


Photo by Ksenia Makagonova on Unsplash


There is one thing that keeps coming to mind when I meditate/pray/contemplate/ask for guidance: “start at the beginning.” 


But start what? What am I supposed to be starting?  #ineedanswers

Well, I’m starting 51 with a new body.

I’m starting 51 with a new awareness of my relationship with money.  #asimplerebel

If you look at it one way,  I’m starting 51 with a clean slate.

I feel like I have less history, but also less ambition. I’m just not sure how it all fits together. 

So for now, I plan to continue to simplify, simplify, simplify, as much as I can. This will help so I don’t need as much financially which will, in turn, provide some freedom professionally. 

On another positive, my home life feels steady (but I’m 100% positive I can improve how I am in relationship to my loved ones!)  #hopeididntjinxmyself

I also feel calm and relaxed about the unknowing. The fact that I feel adrift isn’t sending me into a panic.

I guess practicing nonattachment can have that effect.

For now, I am keeping this quote by Rainer Maria Rilke close to my heart:


Have you ever felt this way? If so, what did you do – if anything? How did it all turn out for you? I’d love to know…please share in the comments! 

In love with the question,