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 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"... overall just not good enough. Over timeI 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 that 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 am working on is making sure I am always honest. Honest about who I am, how I feel, my opinions, my weirdness, my sensitivities. 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 seems like it will be easier. And in the moment it may make things easier, but it is hard on the soul, friends.
Once you let yourself start conforming (or any other unhealthy habit), 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 become passive because it would be too overwhelming to care deeply about things sometimes. I have let myself believe 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 risk messing 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. 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 how much this had affected my adult relationships.
Until fairly recently, I'd get into a social setting and I feel like I didn't know how to have a conversation with an adult! I mean, eventually I would get into the swing of it when it was with my friends, but small talk with strangers? Nope. I'd forgotten how to do it. It's like I'd 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? In this life season, 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. And I am incredibly thankful (and lucky) to have the tribe of friends that I do.
Overall, 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. And I don't want to miss out on what this season has to offer.