Thursday, July 25, 2013

35, er 36...

I turned 36 today.  36.  Thirty-six.  I gotta say, I'm good with it.  Really good.  What is it that they say?  Age is just a number?  Well, I don't think that's entirely true.  Whether we wanna admit it or not, we are somewhat defined by our age...both good and bad.  I'm well into my mid-thirties.  I won't lie, that sounds weird, yet kinda awesome.  Of course I worry that some of the best parts of my life are behind me...that I've maybe missed opportunities or wasted time.  But, in the same token, I choose to believe I have so much more ahead of me.  I am entering this year of my life looking forward to some great things...M comes home in just over a week...I will be starting a new job that I truly know will allow me to use my real gifts...time off with my girl before school starts...and this feeling that good things are coming, as strange as that sounds.  I'm excited and peaceful all at the same time.  Like I'm on the verge of something yet I don't quite know what. 

There isn't much to say about the past year.  Looking back there are things I am beyond thankful for...people I am even more certain I can't imagine living without...moments that scared the hell outta me...and moments that taught me to fly.  I have a tiny red bow on the inside of my left wrist that will always remind me of this year.  I have memories that are mine alone and others made richer because of those I share them with.  All in all, I am happy to turn the page on 35 and start a new chapter with 36.  

I can see glimpses of the future and I'm crazy excited to experience every bit of it!  So, this 36 year old who did nothing less than play kickball in her high school cheerleading skirt the night before her birthday, can't wait to see what the next 364 days hold!  

Monday, July 1, 2013


she's been gone just over three weeks. i've had some fun and i've spent more time alone than i'm used to. i haven't written...i just haven't felt like it. i promised myself that i would take this time to work through some things i'm struggling with and to do whatever it is i feel like doing. which, for over a week, wasn't much because i got a terrible summer cold (cue pity party) that left me fairly miserable and absolutely exhausted. so, i've laid and watched tv and allowed myself to struggle with the demons that tend to overwhelm me when i'm like this. you know, all the things most people don't see and assume i don't deal with because i do a decent job of hiding them the rest of the time. some of which are there all the time and some that only surface when she's gone all summer. 

i have a friend who always tells me how strong i am, that she wishes she were more like me.  she has no idea the things that go through my mind, especially when it comes to my insecurities as a mom...especially when she's gone like this and i can't see her look at me or reach for me when i know i'm the only one who can make something better or reassure her when she's upset or scared.  they took her to see her favorite music group ever and are leaving in the morning for vacation...they are able to give her things i just haven't and ultimately i fear more than anything she will want to stay...there she has a whole she only has me.  there.  i said it.  the one thing i don't ever verbalize because if i do then it's out there.  the thing i fear most, the weight i carry that never fully lessons.  just typing it makes my chest ache.      

and then, i read something that helped put things in perspective...something called "handbook for life", or 41 incredibly simple things - many of which i think i've lost sight of over time.  things that help me remember the simplicity of life, that it's so important to find joy in the little things and to remember the world is so much bigger than me and whatever silliness i'm making a big deal out of in my head at the moment. 

tonight i called my grandma and found a comfort in her voice that i've not felt in a long time...i walked through the stacks in a brand-new library, touching the spines, reading passages and taking in the stories around me....tonight i took a yoga class and focused on nothing but my breathing and poses...i walked charlie and called m - making her ask why i was calling because she had called me earlier this afternoon when she knew i wouldn't expect it - yet, i just needed to hear that little voice and remind her of how much i love her...and, finally...turned the tv on to find my favorite movie like God had cued it up just for me.  little things.  nothing of any importance.  but, each made me feel a little better in their own way. 

people ask if i miss her.  they ask how i'm doing.  yes, i miss her.  constantly.  like a piece of me, like my right arm, is gone.  but...i know she's coming home.  i'm thrilled she's having fun and that she is so comfortable there and that she doesn't need me next to her all the time.  but, yes...i miss her and wonder if she ever needs me when we're apart like this.  it's funny.  when i'm like this, i know how weak i become and every insecurity i have is magnified for some reason. 

so...things to think about...or, my own version of the handbook of life...

1.  make a difference.  for someone.  each day.
2.  give more than you take. 
3.  love.  just love.  honestly.  openly.  with everything you have. 
4.  stop being afraid of the what if's and stop looking back on the coulda been's - they don't matter and only make you unable to appreciate the right now's.
5.  look around you.  see the people around you and be open to their needs.  chances are good someone needs you more than you think...even if all they need is a hand to hold.
6.  hug someone.  tight.  with both arms.
7.  stop.  whatever it is in your life that doesn't add value or make you feel good, just stop. 
8.  surround yourself with people who make you a better person. 
9.  take time to pray.  talk to Him.  and then watch to see what unfolds.
10.  remember, you were created for a purpose...find it, and live it.
11.  look someone in the eyes and remind them of why they're special to you. 
12.  slow down.  it's not a race and no one really cares who gets there first anyway.

okay...that's a start.  and...while i miss her beyond's now my BIRTHDAY MONTH and i plan on making LOTS of memories over the next few weeks so if you're interested in helping me make one or two, let me is too short to sit on the sidelines, i want to know that no matter what i got out there and lived, that i made a difference even if it was only to someone who heard my laugh across the room or saw my smile and for whatever reason that was enough...