We recently graduated our oldest daughter from high school. It is a huge milestone! I think back about all the years that have past and so much life that has happened. I also begin to remember as I see the anticipation of all the graduates whether it is high school or college and the hope and dreams. I think back to how excited the little things were, although at the time they were huge. I remember the excitement of planning out the future. How thrilled I was with my first car (even though it was Chevy Cavalier) it didn't matter that it wasn't fancy, it was mine. It symbolized freedom to be an adult. I remember sitting in my first apartment, which was the first floor of a really old house, 4 simple rooms but feeling unbelievably amazed that it was mine to decorate and take care of. My floors to wash, my kitchen to cook in.... I couldn't wait. The first year in that apartment I would clean everyday and bake and ohhh how I loved to check the mail! I was newly married and we had a young daughter and I would wake up excited to take care of my adult life. We had little money at the time, so we had to scrape up some crazy recipes and eat at my parents house a lot. We had no money for a lot of holiday decorations so I would pull out the construction paper and let my daughter go to town decorating, we made paper chains and while it looked cheesy it was beautiful to us! Then we bought our first house.....it was over 100 years old, broken, asbestos covered, on a busier road, falling apart, water smelled funky, haunted.....beautiful house.. We were so excited. We had a yard to take care of, a porch to sit on, I felt so much pride taking care of and driving up to our house. I loved having a house big enough to have family and friends over. It was so exciting and it didn't matter how small or insignificant or crazy bad investment it was.....it was mine! The other day as me and my husband drove away from our much larger, much nicer, unhaunted house I told him...we have done really well in life..... but somehow the better things got the less exciting it has become...House work became a chore, yard work became a chore, we get tired of eating the same foods, the decorations never look good enough.....I want to go back.... somehow living with less and living within the reality of our income and ability was so much more satisfying! God was right learning to be content with what you have brings joy!
So as I have mentioned before I may have a slight comparison problem. I tend to think everyone's grass is greener. I have found a pattern in my life recently that is sabotaging myself. Sometimes I find things that make me happy, quirky things, not life important things. For example, I think sometimes I was born for the wrong era, I love the housewifey stuff of the 50s and even some of the 1800s stuff. I wish I lived in a time that kind of lifestyle was what most people were doing. What I realized in this line of thought was I wish this is what was expected of me and looked at as doing life "right" which to some people it is, but then I start thinking about all the other things I "should" be doing. I "should" have started a great career by now, I mean I worked dang hard for that degree and am still paying for it, while making no income. Acting the part makes me feel different and then I worry that I am not being a good role model to my girls as the woman who can make her way. I worry that people think I am lazy or weird.....note the pattern worry worry worry.....eventually that worry makes me tell myself I am not living in reality. I try to change things, I start to look for a job, consider sending the kids back to school, give the kids more frozen waffles... I look in the mirror and decide that I don't look pretty enough and so the cycle begins, I drive myself crazy seeking "the new me" only to find that nothing else is working and nothing is me. Then eventually I give up go on a cleaning and cooking binge, put my skirt back on and get back to me. Being that homemaker lady makes me feel at peace, it makes me feel whole. When I try to run away from that and be what I think would be most acceptable to most people I get so stressed. And the kicker is ..... no one cares.... honestly no one is losing sleep over how I spend my days, this is all my imagination and selfishness at that! I need to let go of these 16 year old feelings! Anyway all of this has made me realize that 1. I have some anxiety issues (although i knew that) and 2. I feel like my life choices have to please everyone but me. I spend way too much time worrying if who I am is different, offensive, irritating.... and the older I get the more tired I get of caring. This is me...like it or not....I am not an extrovert, I don't like a busy life away from my family, I like to cook cookies and cakes and things that are so bad for us but bring smiles, I like hanging out with my husband even after 20 years, yep I am that needy wife, I believe God is leading me and that following Him is my number one priority. That's me like it or not.