It was my birthday the other day. Normally I’m not one for taking stock on anniversaries, but a number of things swirling around have left me in a pensive mood. In addition to being a year older, my daughter recently attended her first semi-formal dance.

Short dress, high heels, boyfriend at the door, the whole magilla. Nothing too terrible there. She looked very beautiful, sweet and appropriate to an 8th grade dance.

The dress my daughter wore

This part eluded some of the other girls unfortunately. Or maybe it eluded their parents. In any case, the boy, wearing his fathers suit (rolled at the cuff) came in the house so we could indulge in pictures, and then opened the car door for her. Thankfully they were too far away to hear our “Aww” as we watched, as there is only so much parental humiliation two teens can endure.

All in all a lovely ritual that I never personally experienced, but can readily appreciate.

These small transitions to adulthood are what have me thinking I guess. From the outside it can look like children playing at being grown up, but from the inside I’m sure its the continual hard work of growing and changing. And from the other side, children must think the grownups, with their authority, power and experience, have it all figured out. Maybe sometimes we do, but an awful lot of the time we are doing the hard work of growing and changing.

Every once and again I think “Good gravy when do I finally get it all figured out?”  Adulthood is not what I imagined when I was 14 that’s for sure. Risk seems so much riskier when you have others to care for beside yourself, and self-care slides down to the bottom of the To-Do list.

The biggest transition I have managed lately is not giving up on my coaching business. Seeing clients before & after work and on the weekends is scads more work than having coaching be my full time profession, but I have decided that it fits firmly into that self-care category. The work of coaching recharges my energy like nothing else. Therefore it is essential, not optional.

Having coaching, professional development and writing be what I do for a living, now that’s a transition I look forward to.