Remember that one time on How I Met Your Mother when Barney Stinson uttered those infamous words “everyone I know is getting married or pregnant and I’m just getting more awesome.” Well, ladies and gentlemen, that is my life in a nutshell. Seriously, I’d say upwards of 90% of my friends are either engaged, married, or pregnant (hopefully in that order) and then there’s me. Single and posted up on a tropical island, living where everyone else vacations.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not complaining. I’ve got my hands full with Skyy and can’t imagine having another person to take care of besides myself. So while my friends are going to pre-marital counseling at their church or learning how to breastfeed I’m planning my next boat day and this Friday’s happy hour.
Although living on an island isn’t for everyone. I work for Last Key Realty, a luxury vacation rental company and exclusive buyer broker. I’m a licensed real estate agent and coined the term working tourist because I get to see the beautiful houses of Key West and help people make an investment in their own happiness for a living. I also put less than 4,000 miles a year on my car and can ride my bike to work. Like our radio station 98.7 says, “if you’re closer to Cuba than Wal-Mart, you’re in Conch Country!” Oh so true. I mean, in my opinion Amazon Prime was the best thing to happen to Key West, followed closely by the salad bar at New Publix.
People tell me everyday how lucky I am to live in Key West and it wasn’t until a few months back I started correcting them. I’m not lucky, I made a conscious decision to move to a place where I am happy. Just like my friends made a conscious decision to get engaged/ married/ pregnant because that’s what makes them happy. And I’ve got to say, it’s pretty exciting meeting all these new little people! Maybe that’s my life’s calling, to be a really good aunt; Tia Kweed has a nice ring to it don’t you think?
One of the things that Bishop TD Jakes says is that you have to surround yourself with people who have your same rhythm in life. It’s easy to pick out the people that are dancing to your same tune and the people who are so off beat it’s crazy. Everyone has a different soundtrack to their life, some might be your favorite song, others may not, the trick is to appreciate all the music, not just some genres. My sister Kate sent me a card a few months back with a quote that has come to be one of my faves.
“If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music which he hears, however measured or far away.” ~Henry David Thoreau
Sunday I was watching a show about how to have hard conversations and realized that the hardest conversations are often the ones that I have with myself. Constantly reminding myself that other people do not get a vote in my happiness and to follow my instincts.
But then again, isn’t that what life is all about? Learning to trust in ourselves and follow our instincts and heart. Recognizing that nothing is arbitrary and at this very moment I am exactly where I need to be. Realizing that nothing and no one in your life is arbitrary? I sometimes find myself thinking about the future, I mean is it really realistic for me to live on this little 2 x 4 mile island for the rest of my life? What are the odds of me meeting someone to spend the rest of my life with here, at mile marker 0 of all places? Then I laugh to myself and say who cares, it’s working for now!