Thursday, October 02, 2014

Finding Excitement Again

If you know me or have followed me for a while, you may know that I will be turning 40 this month. Saying I'm a bit anxious about it is an understatement. I think it's because I vividly remember my parents being 40 and it makes it seem so impossible that I'm already that same age. I had a little bit of a hard time turning 30 and as I look back now, I want to laugh at my 30-year-old self.  Life has changed so incredibly much in this last decade. Our baby boys are no longer babies, priorities have changed and our challenges in life seem much more significant.

The boys are all in school now and their hurdles are bigger. More real. Life lessons come a little tougher. Controlling their peer groups {especially in middle school} has become almost impossible and being a helicopter mom is no longer an option. It's like a fight to achieve the right balance of positive and negative experiences, which are essential at this stage to help them create a solid foundation. I feel like our job as parents is only getting harder.

At 30, we had just moved from our first little home and were making another house "in the acres" a home. We originally said we'd be here for 7-10 years and then move to our forever-ish home. We often giggle at the unintentional twist in our plans. Not that we don't love it here! We definitely do. And we are beyond grateful for this roof over our heads. But as the years have passed, priorities have changed. Therefore, our plans have changed too. Our thoughts of grandeur have taken a backseat for sure! Our boys' wants and needs come first...over dream homes, the desired new sofa, remodeling, our wardrobes, and luxurious vacations. So, "no" and "not right now" are words we've grown pretty accustomed to saying. I'd like to think it will make us all more well-rounded people. We made the choice about twelve years ago for me to be at home as much as possible, even if it meant sacrificing.  Now that the boys are older, we have really been thinking of what my "part 2" is going to look like. A new career or an advanced degree? Who knows? Regardless, our plans are just plans, not promises. Only God has the itinerary on our journey.

Ten years ago we were attending baby showers and weddings every other weekend it seems. There was always a party and an occasion to celebrate. Life seemed so festive. I was talking with a friend recently about how we "did" that phase of our lives much better than this one that we're moving into. We both agreed that we've reached a point where we notice our parents aging and want to keep them closer than ever and not take our time with them for granted. It's also become common to see friends and family struggling for one reason or another and those we care about facing health challenges. Honestly, I feel like we've seen it a lot in the last year or so. It makes life seem less care-free and a little glum at times.

Any who... Now that I've gone all Debbie Downer on you and completely depressed you, I by no means think life is all bad now or that it's all down hill from here. Life is very good and I want to feel more of it! That's why I'm writing over these next 31 days about finding opportunities to be excited. Truly EXCITED! I feel like I do a pretty good job of finding everyday JOY, but I'm really looking for those moments and people that get you excited about life. Constantly telling your family and yourself no, putting others' needs ahead of yours, and watching people you care about suffer can take your focus off things in life that excite you. Anxiety frequently gets in the way and you can just feel the doldrums coming on.

I'm hoping with this little challenge that I'll accomplish a couple of things - 1)finding something to be excited about everyday, and 2)getting back to documenting life as I used to. This couldn't have happened during a better month, as October is my favorite! Lots of birthdays and good times fill our calendar in October. So I hope you'll follow along, send prayers, and share in this with me during these 31 days!

Find links to Days 1-31 here!

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