Success is a place

I always thought I would be successful when I could wear stilettos on the weekdays, when I could have a car that spoke for me, when I could have letters behind my name to speak something of my intelligence.

But, I don’t have anything of those things. I wear flats, sometimes, black ones that are so run down that the heels are uneven. I drive a nice car but it’s not the kind that speaks for me, I still must speak for myself. I have two letters behind my name instead of three but I hardly ever use those letters because signing my name on playdate sign-ins with M.A. seems pretentious. And desperate.

I am not the version of successful that I thought I needed/wanted to be back then, but I do feel everything that I thought “success” embodied. I do feel happy now. I do have my health. I do have children now. I am pursuing small parts of my dream when I can now. So, am I successful?

I would argue “yes.” Yes, I am successful because I am at a place that is beautifully splendidly my own. It’s my chosen place. I chose to be a stay-at-home-mom. I chose to quit my job. I chose to start this blog and to wear jeans with a silver blouse with the shoulder pads removed today.

Success is a place.

It’s a place you get to through your decision to chose your own path. It’s not about money or cars or degrees or all the other stuff that really can be read as signs of success. It’s a place you get to and in getting there you kick your feet up and can comfortable say, “I’m here because this is where I was supposed to be. I’m here because I tried to follow my heart and this is where I landed with feet planted and an open heart.” That’s success.


How do you define success? Would you consider yourself successful at this point in your life?


This was my Stream of Consciousness post. It’s unedited, written in 5 minutes, and inspired by a prompt on All Things Fadra.



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13 Responses to “Success is a place”

  1. Monika says:

    “Success is a place. It’s a place you get to through your decision to chose your own path.” I’m glad you are comfortable where you’ve landed. So many times that’s not quite enough to make us feel whole, that’s where I find myself now. Still having something left to prove & calculating how to get things in gear to make that happen. Stopping over from #SOCSunday.

    • Jessica says:

      I totally understand that feeling. It’s tough. I think as you as you continue to put one foot in front of the other, things will happen for you! Years ago, I believed that success, or reaching the beacon of success as it existed in my head, was what would bring about happiness, security, self-love, etc. I still have goals in my life now and I’m still working towards things, but I feel successful because I now feel all the things that I thought would come with my idea of success. So, I feel happy, even though I’m not rich. I feel accomplished, even though I don’t have a job. I feel valuable, even though I don’t have a PhD. Does that make sense?

      Thanks for stopping by Monika.

  2. Success is when we no longer believe the BS we once fed ourselves, before we fell wholeheartedly in love with our babies and before we “got” it fully… this life we lead.

    Loved reading your post today as I hopped around the SOCSunday blogs. What you speak spoke to me. Definitely!

    • Jessica says:

      So true! And beautifully stated. I’m glad you enjoyed this post, Julie! And thank you for letting me know that your comment had fallen into my spam box! Sorry about that!

  3. Hear, hear!! I agree with you 100%. Over the weekend, a friend told me she was starting to doubt her decisions to stay at home with her 2 young sons, that perhaps a career is important for a woman, that she might not be able to handle 2 kids on her own once she loses her domestic live-in help – this, after spending a couple of hours with a bunch of women who either are SAHMs like her but rely on domestic help, or women who choose to work full time. She felt like she was ‘unsuccessful’.

    I shared my perspective with her – staying home with her boys is a privilege, not a sacrifice. A choice she made with the support of her husband family. That she managed quite well before she ever had domestic help. That she is a good mother and wife. That she did not need approval or validation from other people, their opinions or a 9-5 job to make her feel whole.

    She texted me back later to thank me for putting things in perspective for her – that, for me is my little success for the day :)

    • Jessica says:

      That’s awesome, Alison! I think it’s very easy for stay at home moms to question their worth, especially when comparing themselves to other moms. I have done it on occasion, but what stops me from throwing a pity party is the remembrance that where I am is where I’m supposed to be. Yes, being a stay at home mom without help is/will be tough, but it’s also very rewarding and very do-able! Your friend can do it and she will do it well!

    • vanita says:

      i loved this post and Alison’s comment. it touches home for me. being home with my kids is a privilege, something i couldn’t have when the teens were little, something that i longed for and am truly happy that i have now for all 4. i may only sleep four hours a night, but damnit, i’ve got way more hours in a day now with my kids then i did as a week when i worked outside of the home. i’d have to say, i’ve found success too. wonderful wonderful post jessica. you hit the nail on the head darlin.

  4. Leighann says:

    I couldn’t agree with you more. Happiness comes from within.

  5. Robbie says:

    I love this…success is a place… YES YES YES

  6. Emmy says:

    Love this! As yes, definittions of success can so grately very- but yrs, as you do I consider myself successful. I have a college degree, a good home, a loving husband, three kids whom I am able to stay home with- and it s what I want so yes a success.

  7. Kimberly says:

    The definition of success varies with each person in every circumstance. My family is happy, laughing, loving, and thriving. That to me? Is successful.

  8. I love coming to your blog. Yes, I can say that I am – well, getting there. This new “wrench” in the process has slowed me down, but I know I am there…just hafta feel like I am there. Know what I mean?