When the plan goes to pot

My life plan was pretty generic: get married by thirty, have some kids, secure a good job, buy a house, avoid violently murdering someone in the supermarket just because they skipped the queue…you know, standard stuff. Somewhere along the way, the plan went to s**t. I woke up one morning, at the ripe old age of twenty nine and realised I had done none of those things. 
                                                      

I know what you’re thinking: what kind of uptight loser has a life plan? So, okay, firstly, it wasn’t exactly a plan. More of a… life map. Wait, wait… that’s worse, isn’t it? Basically, I just had some things that I wanted to have achieved or realised before I hit a certain age. It wasn’t like I made exact goals to be achieved by exact dates…I’m not that obsessive *nervous laugh* 

                                                      

My team and I just planning what I’ll eat for brunch tomorrow


I felt that being married with maybe at least one kid and having some kind of steady income by the age of thirty seemed to be a realistic enough goal, right? I imagine a conversation with seventeen year old Jane to be a little something like this: 

Seventeen Year Old Jane: Woah, it’s me!

Current Jane: Yes, yes, you decide to ditch the bleach bottle and thick eyebrows are a thing now, soooo…

Seventeen Year Old Jane: Hey, I’m making it work. If it’s good enough for Gwen Stefani…anyway, how am I? 

Current Jane: You know, cool. Yeah, pretty cool.

Seventeen Year Old Jane: So I’m married then? To Jack right? He’s sooo dreamy.

Current Jane: Erm, no. No, you’re not. You’re engaged though. And he’s dreamy alright…but he does this thing with his nose when he’s sleeping and I swear to GOD itmakesmewannapunchhimsoharrrrd. 

Seventeen Year Old Jane: Eh…not married. Okay…okay…but, you’re… you’re pregnant right? 

Current Jane: Eh, no. That’s last night’s takeaway pizza but thanks for reminding me I’m not a size 8 anymore. Nope. No kid. Nada. Notta one. 

Seventeen Year Old Jane: Okay…okay…that’s not so bad… you own a house though? A house? Right?

Current Jane: Well, I don’t own it in so much as I…rent…it. So yeah, I rent. Still. But you know, it’s cool. I can totally do what I want with the place. I have a pretty bitchin’ collection of owl ornaments and seashells. You like seashells, right? 

Seventeen Year Old Jane: Uh huh. Seashells. Right. Erm, so a job? You…have…a job?

Current Jane: Oh yeah, totally, yeah. I’m a teacher.

Seventeen Year Old Jane: Wow! Really? That’s great. Okay that’s really reassuring. Okay. So you have a permanent teaching job. Woah, for a second there I was kinda freaking out.

Current Jane: Well, you know, permanent in the sense that my contract ends in like…four weeks. Permanent like a bottle of hair dye, amiright? Hello? Past Jane? 

Seventeen Year Old Jane: *hyoerventilating into a brown paper bag* 

So yeah, past Jane probably wouldn’t be too impressed with a snapshot of current Jane’s life. On paper, I guess it looks like I haven’t got much going on. The thing is, Seventeen Year Old Jane didn’t know much about life, and also believed that thirty was, like, really old. She also had very dodgy hair extensions, so I really wouldn’t listen to her anyway. 

                                                                

Seventeen Year Old Me be like “It’s called fashion, look it up, bitches”


I had assumed that I would have life all figured out by now. I also assumed that I would just magically become incredibly wise and responsible , like this guy 

                                                     

Except with marginally better posture and hair…


I never really gave any consideration to the fact that I would actually be the same goddamn person. You know, the person who’s sometimes lazy, sucks at long term planning and likes kids but also likes butternut squash…it doesn’t mean I want to commit to eating it everyday for the next eighteen years. I wasn’t going to suddenly transform into a kale-eating, stepford wife supermom. 

Right now, I am a little directionless. I’ll get married in the next few years. Maybe I’ll even have kids. I’ll probably get a proper contract in a more secure job too. Or, I’ll join the circus, grow a beard and kiss sexually-confused men for five bucks a pop. Whatever happens, I don’t need to obsess over it. Life has a habit of happening even when you’re not thinking about it. 

That’s my wish going into my thirties: (notice my avoidance of the word plan…*aggressive cat hiss*) I won’t necessarily plan. I won’t set unrealistic goals. Then, if I don’t achieve them, I won’t feel like flagellating myself with a spiky whip. My goals will probably be a little more shorterm like “get through at least one episode of Supervet without sobbing uncontrollably” or “maybe don’t secretly eat 95% of Jack’s dinner when he goes to the bathroom”. Obviously, big decisions do take some level of planning. But I think the key thing is is to stop setting the bar so high. I can f**k up. I can make stupid mistakes. I can get married in some cramped registry office and it won’t matter because I’ll get to share my life with someone very special. And you know what, if I’m thirty nine and my life is similar to the way it is now (well, minus the anxiety) I’ll be pretty happy. If it’s completely different, well I’ll probably be pretty happy too. The important thing is, I don’t know. I can’t know. And that’s okay. 

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22 thoughts on “When the plan goes to pot

  1. radgirlclassifieds says:

    I love this! I can’t wait to read more from you, I just followed you. Very creative post! it’s important to remember that not having a plan is sometimes good! It gives you room to become who you are, ya know? I would appreciate it if you’d check my blog out as well. ☺️

  2. The V Pub says:

    What did Lennon say? Life is what happens when you’re busy making other plans? You said it’s not a plan, but a map, and the roads are always changing. Detours, potholes, highways and byways. Whoops. Almost got into some songwriting there. Anyway, you’re amazing and don’t let anything change you. And you certainly don’t want to be that wise monkey. He’s got a multi-colored bum, and that wouldn’t look good in shorts.

    • janeybgood says:

      You’re so right. It’s the old cliché: it’s not the destination but the journey that counts. And it’s true.
      Haha 😂 You’re right, I didn’t think of the butt. That’s not a good look lol

  3. Jess says:

    This is awesome and I want to try this haha I haven’t exactly reached any of my goals either. Go with the flow – even though it’s easier said than done.

    • janeybgood says:

      We could set a short-term goal, like this time next month we’ll have tested a new flavour of gum? Ice cream? Haha, something simple! We’re still very young anyway….right? RIGHT??

  4. pensitivity101 says:

    I wanted six kids and stay at home to bring them up while the Man of the house went out to earn the wages. Didn’t work out like that at all. Got married at 21, divorced by 25. Live in relationationship went down the pan after 8 years and breakdown. Got into a serious career job for 12 years having married at 35 and still going strong at 60. Kids, none, but fostered loads in live in relationship so I guess that kinda counts.
    Life never goes how we intend it to. Best to enjoy the moment, the company and not regret anything. If you’re happy together, you’ll grow together. The rest will be the icing on the cake.

  5. marsnplato says:

    Hahahahaha, I love this piece. Particularly because I am a 31-year-old astrologer who is almost exclusively getting clients between the ages of 27-32. Fuck Saturn. That’s all I have to say, on behalf of my clients and – even if you aren’t into astrology – on behalf of what you’re experiencing now too :). Sit with being in a bit of a whirlwind, I say. At least you have…the “now” and shall we say, goals?? ❤

    • janeybgood says:

      I find that fascinating! Must be a fun thing to do. I’m actually feeling a lot better the past few days. Part of me is excited about turning thirty, especially since I feel a lot less pressure than I used to.
      I need to hear more about this astrology of yours!

  6. marsnplato says:

    That’s amazing you’re feeling better already! And excited too?! Truly feel like I am witnessing the release of suffering with the equal release of control/pressure. 🙂 Feel free to check out my website at maieutic-arts.com for astrology stuff! If you’re really interested, feel free to contact me there – I don’t want to write a novel in your comment section, hah ❤

  7. Chelly says:

    Oh I’m glad you’re still sticking around for a while, that makes me very happy! 😁 you know, I realised I’ve missed you! You got me through college last year because I was failing a lot and college can be lonely sometimes, even though I loved it at the same time! I don’t plan anymore since I got sick, but I was never much good at plans anyway! I’m lucky I’ve always known I’d be happy doing music, whether it was a stable job or not, although when I was 18 we knew there was a high chance of unemployment even after a degree so I feel like I was prepared for the worst ..and I still don’t have the degree 😂 but I don’t mind cos I can always go back when I feel more able..now I just wish I enjoyed myself more before I got sick because life’s too short and you never know, you might not be able to go see Beyonce next time so you might as well go see her now 😂 and I should have gone to longitude, and I should have gone to concerts with my friends, instead of pretending to study for the leaving cert and I should have got a driving license when I was healthy cos now I can’t and have to wait til my migraines improve more..sorry, I don’t know why I always end up sharing everything about me 😂😂 thanks for making me laugh today 🙂

    • janeybgood says:

      Aw thank you so much. I’ve been meaning to write to you because you’ll never guess what…. I was diagnosed with vestibular migraines. It all totally makes sense now and I can’t believe the hell people go through. I am just in awe of the fact that you have managed to come this far because, honestly, I feel like crawling into a hole and dying (woah, dramatic much 😂)
      I have such poor concentration at the moment, I’m constantly WRECKED and I can’t take lights. I have lots of visual disturbances and the worst part is that I’m in a constant brain fog. I’ve been going for vestibular rehabilitation therapy but it’s just exhausting me. Work is importable and I’m barely getting through the day before I get home and collapse into bed with muscle pain everywhere. I just never really feel as if I’m fully aware of anything, my cognitive abilities have deserted me.
      I’m going to try go to the GP this week to explain this all but she just isn’t listening. It was actually a physio who diagnosed me after extensive exams.
      Sorry for unloading, but I know you’ll understand! Hope you are doing okay 🙂

  8. LonerBlood says:

    Jane, it’s totally fine to not know. You’re on a good track, seem like a decent (and funny) person; you have love in your life and, despite the panic attacks, you’re healthy.
    The wedding, the house, the kids… they’ll come.
    Enjoy your 30s – they’re way better than the 20s. You’re doing just fine, beautiful lady. ❤
    May I suggest reading the book, When Things Fall Apart (sorry, can't italicize) by Pema Chödrön? It has helped me get through some extremely tough times.
    Thanks for the post. I know you're trying to figure out some shit, but it was delightful. 🙂

    • janeybgood says:

      Thank you! It’s funny how someone I don’t even know can cheer me up far better than the majority of people I do know. Thank you for taking the time to make me feel better 😀

      • LonerBlood says:

        You’re quite welcome. I had plans for next year to get a job after I (finally) graduate this December. But, then some sweet little soul came into my life… well, into my uterus, really. HA! I’ll get the job, just not as soon as I thought. Baby countdown: 20 days!! Happy Solstice to us! ❤

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