My So-Called Boring Life

Speaking of things I find fun now, my most joyous moment this week, without a doubt, was sitting on a couch watching a cooking show after dinner with Josh, Virginia, and Jazzy. And quite honestly, it’d probably make my top moments of the year, too. Is that sad?

If you’d have asked me what my top moment of the year was after college, I’d probably say, attending the U.S.A. vs. Brazil World Cup game in 1994. Or in 1996, performing in a play in the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. In 1998, making my first improv team. In 2001, marrying Josh and in 2004, giving birth to Virginia and buying a house (in the same day—BOOYAH). Finding a dream job, running a marathon, completing a novel—yep, those are pretty easy moments to pick out. But lately I’ve been finding some serious joy in the every day.

And now? Seriously, the four of us piling up on our couch to watch the latest episode of Australian Master Chef is the most fun. I didn’t predict that I’d become so conventional. In fact, I’m pretty sure I prayed I would never become so boring. But I totally did! Twenty years ago, I mocked people like me—derided their conventionality, their lack of originality and zest for life. Maybe I am complacent and comfortable watching other people go after their dreams, while I sit on my couch sandwiched between Josh and Virginia with Jazz sprawled out on our laps. Does it mean I stopped having dreams, too? I don’t know. I think I used to think that people who contentedly watched TV after work had somehow traded their dreams or excitement to watch other people reach for the stars, like it was easier than reaching for the stars themselves.

Or maybe I just didn’t know how wonderful it is to sit and laugh with my family, ooh and aah at the culinary masterpieces (or sometimes less-than masterpieces) that appear before us on our television screen. Virginia talks about what she would want to cook and bake, and I can see the inspiration grow in her eyes. No, I think my mistake was writing off hanging out with family doing nothing productive as a worthy activity. It’s as much of a valid and worthwhile choice as it would be to attend the ballet or go zip lining. But frankly, after a long day, I don’t want to do any of that crap.

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