On the 25th of September I celebrated my 29th birthday.
Yeah yeah, I know…I’m still a baby. I’ve been told 😉 Jonathan and I got married when I was 20 (WHAT?!) and had Evan when I was 24. On the flip side of that, my children will be out of my house before I’m 50. So HOLLA!
Anyway, back to the point…
Growing a year older generally causes me to be a little bit introspective, much like the beginning of the New Year. I’d like to take the time to sit and think back on year 28 and think about what I want year 29 to bring. There are always things to learn about ourselves and things we could do better. And hey, there may be some things we are actually doing well and that is ok to celebrate!
Throughout the last few years I have become more comfortable with being myself. I’ve naturally kind of been the oddball most of my life. Mainly due to the fact that I’m always a good 6+ inches taller than everyone else. I know to some that may sound silly, but it is something that makes you stand out, and as a kid and teenager that’s not necessarily the way I wanted to stand out. Add into that a bad overbite that led to 3.5 years of braces, acne, and glasses. I was clearly set up for middle school and high school success. Somewhere along the way I let the lie creep in that I was not as good as, or less than…not good enough. I let that squash a lot of my personality I think. So now I’m in the ongoing process of letting God reveal where those lies have really affected me and shaped things for me. It’s crazy and ridiculous how we can let 5th grade bullies alter how we see our adult selves, right?!
Every year…every day, really I let go of those lies a little bit more and let His truth speak over my life. And I settle into who I truly am, and let that show to the people around me. I’ve let the fear or not being good enough lead me to be passive about a lot of things come my way…the fear of being wrong, or saying something stupid, or not quite funny enough, or insightful enough, etc. etc. It can take the life right out of you if you let it.
So one thing I want to do is make sure I am always honest. Honest about who I am, how I feel, my opinions, my weirdness, my sensitivities…etc. etc. I don’t like confrontation, but mainly I am scared of being wrong or “too different”, so I tend to go with the flow…which is basically just conforming. That’s seems like it will be easier.
In the moment it may make things easier, but it is hard on the soul, friends.
Once you let yourself start doing that, it becomes more and more likely that you will do it again. And before you know it, that pathway in your brain is deep and you’re left wondering who the hell you really are. I have had to dig myself out of that trench, and I don’t want to jump back in it. I want to just be me…I don’t want to be passive because it just feels too overwhelming to care deeply about things sometimes. I generally feel like there are people out there who know WAY more than I do, and I’d rather just let them discuss and “do” rather than try to step in and mess it all up, ya know? But what good is that doing? For others and myself?
God created ME. He created my personality with intention and purpose. The Hannah expression of Jesus. What a disservice to squash that down and not fully embrace it and live it.
There are things that I do care deeply about. And I want to be more pro-active on those things. Sometimes my scope feels so limited as a stay at home mom…and now a pregnant stay at home mom. But this is the season I am in, and God doesn’t say “hey just take these few years off from loving Me and loving people.” There is always an opportunity no matter the season we are in. It looks different for different people at different times, but I want to be open to Him using me where He has me.
Part of this season of life also means naturally being disconnected from people. I am in the thick of it with these babies. Every single thing I do and nearly every conversation I have gets interrupted by a cute little person needing something from me. I don’t think I realized until recently how much this has affected my adult relationships.
Y’all…I get into a social setting and I feel like I don’t know how to have a conversation with an adult! I mean…eventually I get into the swing of it when it’s with my friends, but small talk with strangers? Nope. I’ve forgotten how to do it. It’s like I’ve gotten so used to mainly talking to my children or having every conversation with Jonathan or friends who come hang out with their kids interrupted that I just can’t anymore. Can anyone relate to that? The struggle is SO real. Now that I’m aware of it, I really want to not let that be my norm. I need adult people and adult conversations…because dammit I am an adult! I don’t want every conversation I have to include the phrase “use your words!” or “do you need to go potty?” Can I get an Amen?
Another thing that puts a strain on my adult friendships is that I am by nature an introvert. I recharge by being by myself. And as a stay at home mom, I am rarely by myself. So when my kids are gone, or are in bed for the night I am VERY content to sit on my couch with a TV show or a book. It is well and good to know this about myself, and it’s ok to acknowledge that I need alone time. But when I let this take over and put people and relationships on the back-burner, that’s not cool, dude. One day my kids will have their own lives and I don’t want to be left with no friends because I was too busy “introverting” to maintain and form relationships. Basically this just means I need to be more intentional with my time and efforts with my friends. Because it is SO worth it to have people who you can do life with.
Overall, this year I just want to be authentic. Authentic with who I am and in my relationships. I want to be intentional with the things and people that matter to me. I want to be honest about my feelings and my heart. I want to be open to what God is showing me. I want to not be scared about my big ideas, but just jump head first into the things God puts on my heart without worrying about not being good enough or messing it all up.
It’s ok to fail.
It’s ok to not be the best.
It’s not ok to just sit back and watch the world go by and miss out on all of the wonderful things God has done and is doing.
All of these things are things I hope and pray for my boys, so I need to hope and pray them for myself too. I am still a person. A person of value. Not “just a mom” or “just a wife”. My life is not on hold while I stay home and raise babies. I don’t want to miss out on what this season has to offer…what this year of my life has to offer.
Bring it on, 29.