When I think of the “American Dream,” a cute house in the burbs, two cars, husband, kids and dog all pop into my head. Thats always been what I thought of as making it, and being successful. When I was fresh out of high school, shoot, even into my mid twenties, thats all I wanted. Its what I worked, dated and cried for. I thought that by moving to Chicago, it would be easier to find. Guys with a similar mindset, lower cost of living, all of it. I thought may be a bit more accessible there than in San Francisco. Things have changed…
As my seemingly never ending trip to California rolls on (all of November basically), I have come to realize that what I want out of my life has changed. There was actually a moment, an exact point in time I can pinpoint when exactly it changed and the fog in my brain lifted and I said to myself “I don’t want this.”
“This” being the expected outcome of my life.
I babysat my nephew the other day. He’s a doll, I love him to death. SO much fun, full of life, energy and his little speech impediment is kind of adorable. Spending time with him made me realize, I really don’t have that parental gene. I totally thought I had it, I really did. I always told myself that I wanted kids and that I would have some of my own some day, you know, when the right guy came along. Now, I’m very happy to babysit (as long as they’re well behaved and I don’t have to change diapers), but I actively don’t want kids (not that I’m in danger of accidentally having one since I’m a raging homo and the thought of sex with a…I’ll just stop there.).
Its not just kids that my opinion of has changed. The house, the yard, the dogs and general picture of the American Dream can pretty much suck it. While helping my parents put away patio furniture, over the deck that needs to be replaced before I fall through, walking across the grass that I mowed for years, and into the tool shed which I helped build many moons ago, I realized, I don’t want anything to do with this either. I’m just going to say that thing you’re not supposed to say, it’s too much work and I don’t want it. I don’t care enough to do it. If I came across a windfall of cash and I could pay someone to keep up a yard and house for me, I’d be all about it, but I can write checks like no one’s business. I understand the pride that comes from making a space your own, but, um…I’m over it.
I see myself much happier in a great condo, apartment or townhouse with a small deck or patio or balcony with a great view in the city. The money that I save on not having children, patio furniture, dogs or redoing the roof of the house can go towards fantastic vacations, hobbies, cars and spoiling my nephews and nieces.
I still do want a husband in there somewhere, especially if he likes to cook and doesn’t mind that I’ll never do laundry (I keep small businesses in business by taking my clothes to be fluff and folded, SO worth it.). But I’m hoping he’ll be a little easier to find now that my standards aren’t quite so stringent.
I don’t think that all of the American Dream is for everyone. But I feel like we’re all supposed to want it. Its like that is what we are all programmed to want. It feels very strange taking an anti stance on it. After being of the mindset that it was what I wanted out of life for so long, I feel like a rebel. But I have a feeling, I’m just getting to the party a little later than everyone else. Fashionably late if you will, and luckily, not in dirty clothes from cleaning the yard.