3 Things I wished I’d learned much earlier in life

Huh, so I have to keep this to three things? Jeez, there’s like a boat-load of stuff I wish I’d known sooner. For instance, when you reach 30 you still don’t know shit. I really thought that when I reached 30 I would just know things. Like what I wanted in life and where I was heading. Yeah, that so wasn’t the case.

Okay so the first of the big top three is money management. I was a child of the 70s  and parents didn’t think about stuff like that. I had no clue how to handle money. I wasn’t the kid who said “just write a check” when Mom said there was no money, but I didn’t do a good job. I wasn’t a saver and didn’t know how to be. I’m paying for it now, but lessons learned painfully are lessons that stick.

The next thing is self-care is so damn important. The reason we hear about it so much is that it didn’t happen before. Hello, 70s. We didn’t even have seatbelts. Forget about putting yourself first and focusing on what you need. Hell no. That wasn’t a thing. I’ve come to realize over my Year of Self-Care that first, I’m horrible at it and next it’s not something I can do for a year. It needs to be a concerted effort on my part all the time. It’s taken me forever to realize this, but hey, better late than never.

Finally, and this is kind of funny, but nonfiction books are awesome. I never read them. I thought they were boring. Then I read Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil and Devil in the White City and I was hooked. Now, I probably read nonfiction more than I read anything else. Mary Roach really sealed the deal. I think it was her book Spook that made me realize that nonfiction doesn’t have to be dry or boring. Her stuff is so funny, while still educating.

Now run over and check out the 3 things Bronwyn picked.

 

Best lesson I’ve learned . . .

 

learning-lessons

This week our topic is the best lesson we’ve learned from a work of fiction. Truthfully, the very first book that popped into my head was Little Women by Louisa May Alcott. My lesson: don’t be all sweet and self-sacrificing because you’ll die early, just like Beth. You laugh, but I remember reading this book at maybe 9 or so and I just didn’t like Beth. She was just too goody-goody for me. Then, like that, she died. So, yeah, no being good for me.

That was only reinforced with The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett. The main girl, Mary, was a total brat and I loved her. First, she didn’t die. Then, she got to go live in a huge house, make friends, and hang out in a secret garden. Bam! Being a brat totally paid off for her. To this day, TSG is still my favorite book of all time.

Another book was Jane Eyre. Lesson: don’t fall for some brooding man who lives in a crumbling house because he’ll have a mad wife locked in the attic. So, yeah that one saved me from heartache and the possibility of dying tragically.

Truly, the real lesson is don’t believe everything someone tells you. Rochester totally lied to her about his wife. Jerk. Oh then he had the nerve to ask her to run away with him and pretend to be his wife. Assface. In the end, he’s blind and sad and she goes back to him. Uhhh, no. Once a liar always a liar.

failure-is

In the midst of reading the classics I was also reading romance novels. Romance novels written in the 70s. Yeah if you don’t know what special little snowflakes these books were, you so have to check them out. Young virgin heroine, much older “hero” who treats her horrible and often rapes her then proclaims in the end that he’d always loved her. Bleck!!  From reading these books, I learned my most valuable lesson and it was:

I can write better than this!

Yep, that was it. Even at 12 I realized I could write way better than what I was reading. In fact, as I read, I was rewriting the book in my head to the way it should have been. Strong, older heroines. Alpha males who loved and cherished their partners. Action and adventure they took on as a team.

Now go visit Bronwyn and see what big lesson(s) she learned.