Maybe I am having a midlife crisis but my life is more than halfway over and it is freaking me the hell out. I turn 50 next April and it’s depressing to think that your life is most likely more than half over but for me, it isn’t really about time but rather things I haven’t yet done.
Like living in a yurt!
Does anyone else have days you just want to stop paying the mortgage, save all that mortgage money before the foreclosure hits and you’re kicked out, then buy a tiny house on Amazon on land somewhere where it is warm most months of the year but not too warm.
Or is that just me?
That house up there is just over $5,000 dollars on, of all places, Amazon.
Look at how happy that lady is! You know why? Because she isn’t paying a mortgage!
Or she’s a model in an Amazon ad. WHATEVER.
Ooh, this one is only $64,000!
Okay, so we will need a mortgage for this one but it will be a tinier mortgage to go along with our tiny house.
But for real, what is it about midlife and crises? Especially for women who, for the most part of their adult years, took care of their families. What will be left for me when Ella is grown enough so that I can start to consider what I might want the rest of my life to look like?
Everyone is different but for the most part, I know I am going to need something other than freelance writing to keep me sane once we become empty nesters.
I have an Associate Degree in Absolutely Nothing Marketable and no one wants a woman in her fifties with minimal education but who can write humorously. That doesn’t look great on a resume.
Trust me, I’ve tried.
I found an article a few weeks ago about women changing their course of life after 50 and it was, for lack of an overused word, inspiring. The minister who became a doctor in her fifties? To quote Rob Reiner’s mom in When Harry Met Sally, I’ll have what she’s having.
Remember those Choose Your Own Adventure books from our childhood where you got to pick the ending? Do you remember how exciting it was to be the author? To choose the possible demise of your favorite character?
Well, today’s your lucky day because I want you to choose my demise!
I want you to choose what happens at the end of my book, per se.
I have ideas but I need help guiding me toward what to do because some of them involve money, big balls, and motivation I may not have and I feel like you know me maybe even better than I know myself.
So no pressure, just make the right choice or I will come find you.
Here are my current life plan ideas:
Idea #1- Take a home staging course with a possible interior decorator side course
I have, for many years, wanted to do home staging and the only thing standing in my way was the cost of the course. Because it isn’t a degree but rather a certificate and also, I feel like you either have it or you don’t. If you don’t have an eye for decorating, you really don’t have any business helping others do that and a certificate isn’t gonna help you. But you need the certificate to get jobs and hence the vicious cycle.
My plan is to stage homes for families who can’t afford a traditional stager (which can cost upwards of $1,000) possibly doing it on a sliding scale according to how much they can afford. I love this idea but I guess I don’t have faith in myself because I am really scared that it won’t pan out.
I have confidence issues, it seems, and investing that money in myself when we don’t have that much expendable income seems a bit risky. Add in the fact that you are pretty much on your own after finishing the certificate as it pertains to getting a job and I got kind of scared. I mean, we all have seen how well I did with marketing myself as it pertained to blogging, so I am very hesitant even though this feels exactly like what I should be doing.
Paid to move furniture around?
Idea #2 Finish my bachelor’s degree
I have my Associates degree but I also have close to 90 credit hours total; a typical Associates degree is only 60 credit hours. Many explanations but the biggest is that I have/had undiagnosed ADD and didn’t know what the hell I wanted to do back in 1994 (not much has changed).
I started with Business courses but hated the course Intro To Business. I loved English and Writing but was told by a counselor that it wasn’t marketable and since I was considered a non-traditional student (old), it wouldn’t be a good idea. So I moved on and landed in a Medical Transcription program which led me to take a Medical Terminology class where I fell in love and therefore decided that I wanted to be a Nurse. I took two solid years of nursing prerequisites, took the NLN entrance exam (three times), and finally got accepted into the Nursing program to directly turn it down.
Are you still reading?
I then finished up my Associates (that took me 13 years to complete, no I’m not lying) by taking Early Childhood Education classes because my counselor was tired at this point and I needed to finish within a year before my grants ran out.
I am trying to narrow all of that down to fit on a resume. Maybe you can help with that?
The good news is that I graduated with highest honors and absolutely no debt. The bad news is that I had a degree I couldn’t use because I think we both know I have no business working with preschoolers.
So I really need to sit down with a fresh counselor somewhere and have them tell me how many credits I actually need that will transfer because maybe getting my Bachelor’s degree is more in reach than I thought. If it costs the same as getting my Staging certificate, I think this would be the option I would rather try.
Or do both?
As you can see, I need help.
Idea #3- Start a John Hughes Movie Tour business
I know this is the one you all are gonna vote for and I am going to stop you right there because we need to think with our heads and not our hearts.
A few years ago, I shared with you a blog post about this John Hughes festival that was coming to Chicago and that I was asked to be the person who was to stand at the front of one of the buses and use a microphone to point out all the cool John Hughes shit in the greater Chicago area.
Side note, I had to Google “what do you call the person who uses the microphone on tours” in case you’re looking for someone who is dumber than you are on your dumbest day.
Tour guide was the word I was looking for.
Anyway, the whole festival folded. The guy running it says it’s because of the Hughes family and how they were pissed he was using John’s name. I don’t know if that is true or not but it kind of scared the shit out of me, in the midst of writing this screenplay that had John Hughes name on every single friggin’ page.
Long story long, I would love to operate a John Hughes tour company of his movie locations because there is none in the Chicago area and it’s just stupid. I mean, we are driving people past shit that is really inane and passing by locations used in Ferris Bueller. Like blatantly passing by the Abe Froman French restaurant (oh my God that needs to be a restaurant name) on the way to one of the several annoying Batman locations that the tourists seem to love. And don’t get me started on all the Al Capone/mobster/roaring 20’s tours Chicago has.
Mike and I were driveway-sitting (it’s a “thing” in the Midwest) one beautiful evening last month and we began to formulate the plan: we need to rent a large van, map out the drive, figure out how much to charge, we need advertising, as well as 80s theme snacks and music (we thought of everything).
We wouldn’t title it John Hughes anything as not to get sued but rather just use a generic 80s title.
Buses, Cabs, and Ubers?
The Brunch Club?
Kickass 80s Tour That Doesn’t Drive By Batman Movie Locations?
Then, Mike had another brilliant idea: buy one of the hotels used in Planes Trains and Automobiles (where they crash their car into) to run our business out of. Restore it, run it like an Airbnb and rent rooms to sleep in before/after the tour. An 80s immersive experience!
Why this particular hotel, you ask? Well, it is literally 15 minutes from our home.
That’s it, nothing more exciting.
Just logistically reasonable.
When researching our future Kickass 80s Tour Headquarters, I found an interesting Facebook exchange from the guy who either runs it or is the landlord.
Sounds like I found the solution to my no mortgage/tiny house problem.
Here is an exchange with an apparent John Hughes fan and the landlord/owner:
So now we totally need to meet Charles…..
AND THERE ARE BARKING DOGS!! I feel like THIS would make an even better screenplay.
So you see that we now need to look into buying this place but Charles and the dogs are totally staying. Hell, I may even employ Charles and the dogs in some capacity.
Pick the ending you most love for me. If I don’t do it, I am not allowed to complain on here ever again.