“Hard is trying to rebuild yourself, piece by piece, with no instruction book, and no clue as to where all the important bits are supposed to go.” – Nick Hornby

I’ve met more than a handful of people who say they don’t plan to get married. I’ve heard even more say they don’t intend to have children. And each time, I wondered what their big picture included.

For as long as I can remember, while knowing that I wanted to go to college and have (some sort of) a career, I placed the most value on one day having a family. I said it so many times – my objective was to raise well-adjusted kids. Perhaps my mistake was not setting other definable goals or measures of success. I didn’t have a specific milestone I hoped to reach in any given career; I didn’t have a list of ambitions and aspirations. To a certain point, this served me well and by others’ standards, I’ve been reasonably successful.

I’ve watched my friends and family members get married, have children, graduate medical school, become partners in law firms, start successful businesses and travel the world. Throughout it, I’ve doubted my place on “The Path” more than a few times, but I’ve never questioned where I thought I’d be in the end. It was the only “sure thing” that had been guiding my life to this point.

Lately, I can’t say I’m so sure.

When you’ve judged your entire life’s purpose on one event that may (or may not) happen, how do you hit the reset button and come up with a new plan?