Wanting to Settle Down vs. Wanting to Explore

I’m a big reader, and escaping into other worlds is one of my favorite ways to relax and disengage my brain from the pressures of daily life. Despite the fact that I’m often looking to escape, I’m drawn to books about people struggling with the same things I am. The latest book I’m reading is no different. It’s Sarah Butler’s “Ten Things I’ve Learnt About Love,” and it’s about a woman who is about to turn 30, and all the various things she’s struggling with, including where her “home” really is.

The Amazon synopsis reads:

“About to turn thirty, Alice is the youngest of three daughters, and the black sheep of her family. Drawn to traveling in far-flung and often dangerous countries, she has never enjoyed the closeness with her father that her two older sisters have and has eschewed their more conventional career paths. She has left behind a failed relationship in London with the man she thought she might marry and is late to hear the news that her father is dying. She returns to the family home only just in time to say good-bye.”

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I’ve just started the book, but already I’m captivated by the world Butler has drawn. I can relate to Alice already, especially her conflicting desires to explore the world and also settle down. That seems to be a huge question looming over a lot of thirtysomethings I know, especially the artists among us. We want to create – be it writing, filmmaking, acting, etc. but we also feel the internal tug to settle down and create more of a home base. It’s hard to merge the two, especially because having a creative career can mean financial instability and uncertainty for a long time. It’s hard to imagine having a family when you’re working a day job where you’re barely saving money. On top of that, I think a lot of us are afraid of giving up our own personal time to create and explore our passions, when we barely have enough time as it is. It’s hard to imagine carving out time to write if I had a job, children and a husband. It’s an interesting dilemma I know a lot of us are facing these days.

So, I’m excited to keep reading this book, and see how a fictional character handles all the challenges thrown her way as she creates her own definition of home.

I’ll keep you posted on how it is!

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