How Many Times Do I Have To Fight The Same Battle?

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“You may have to fight a battle more than once to win it.” (Maya Angelo)  Isn’t that the truth? How many times have I decided that I was going to conquer the mountain before me only to be beat down by the first peak?

Image by pasja1000 from Pixabay

This is my year for… 

I’m going to take that big leap into…

To be honest I think my internal GPS is on a permanent script of “recalculating”.

As I was sitting here today thinking about it all I realized that I have never accomplished any goal the way I thought I would.

Ever.

I have taken backroads, off ramps, and shortcuts that always seemed to lead me the long way around.

I have taken the successes and failures of others to heart and compared my own life to theirs.

Through it all I have learned a few things and they’ve stuck with me:

  1. No battle worth fighting is easy and in my experience once it is won (whatever the battle may be- health and nutrition, weight loss, addiction…)
  2. We have to continue the fight to keep it in the winners bracket.

The minute I let my guard down is the minute I begin to slip back into my old ways. Now I don’t mean that the battle is always difficult, but it is always before me. Things I have thought I conquered years ago suddenly rear their ugly heads and I find myself having to make a conscious effort to put them back in their place.  

I used to think that I was a failure because of those times. Now I realize that it’s just part of the process.

Image by klimkin from Pixabay

Do you want to win for good?

Then quit beating yourself up when you have to fight a battle over and over. It’s the battle that makes us strong, it gives us the ability to persevere, and ultimately be changed.

I love gold, but until you heat it up it contains all kinds of impurities. It’s the heat that allows those impurities to be removed and the beauty of the gold can then shine through.

You and I- we are like gold being refined. The fire that we hate, the battle that is long and tiresome- all of it is bringing us to a place where we can look back and see the beauty in it all.

The beauty in ourselves.

The kind of beauty that is so much deeper than what the mirror portrays.

We may have to fight a battle more than once to win it.

True.

We may have to fight for months or years, but in the end I’ve never regretted the fight. I’ve always been glad I took on the challenge. Win or lose each and every battle has brought something out of me that I didn’t know existed. I’ve learned, I’ve grown, I’ve lost and I’ve won, and looking back I’m glad for all of it.

I’m not excited for the battle today (are we ever really?) but I am ready to fight. There is so much more to be accomplished than just a single goal and I am surrendering the battle before me to God. With him all things are possible and I know that I don’t have to fight alone. It’s a win win. I make progress and he changes me.  So, here I am welcoming so many battles I really don’t want to fight and I’m completely confident that it will be worth it.

Image by James Wheeler from Pixabay

How about joining me today?  Pick your battle, lace up your gloves and let’s fight together. Gold takes time to be perfectly refined and so do you and I and ya know what?  Both are beautifully worth it.

Do Something That Scares You Everyday…

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Last year I put a sign on my fridge at work that says- “Do something that scares you every day”. I needed the reminder to get out of the box I’d created for myself, to reach for new stars, and try new things.

The old saying that “if you want something new you have to stop doing something old” is such a solid truth. If we want something to change in our lives we have to change something in our lives.

It’s a simple concept that both my body and mind fight tooth and nail.  

Image by Denise Husted from Pixabay

I love staying right inside the box. I like my warm house, my comfort food and my baggy jeans. I’m a fan of surrounding myself with people who build me up and tell me that I’m perfect just the way I am. I need those people in my life. They are like a soft blanket that makes me feel safe and secure.

But what if I surround myself with another layer of people too? What if I begin to surround myself with people who challenge me? Who don’t let me stay in the box or on the couch? My daughter -in -law is one of these people. She is all the kindness of the soft blanket but often manages to kick me in the fanny just when I need it. (She can remind me that this is a good thing someday) She will often ask- have you written “this” yet? Have you started that challenging project yet?

To be honest, I need the push. If given to my own devices I might choose the couch over the project. I might choose comfort over the uncertainty of a new goal.

Image by Jill Wellington from Pixabay

My son and daughter -in -law are not afraid to take on a challenge. They are what I call “get out of the boat” kind of people. Where I often want to tiptoe in until the water feels nice, they jump straight out of the boat into the turbulence and they swim. Do they hit every goal the way they thought they would? Do they have to make changes and re-directions often? The answer to both is yes. BUT the point is they live their lives outside of their comfort zones and their lives tell a story that challenges me to rewrite mine.

I am a believer that we should never stop learning, never stop putting ourselves out there- even and especially if we are unsure of ourselves. I recently told my son Zach that when we go through hard times in our lives we should pray that God changes us the way he knows we need it. I told him that we never really change or grow when things are easy and good. I gave him the unsolicited advice that he should embrace the tough times and just trust the process.

Image by Quang Le from Pixabay

I felt like mom of the year when I sent the message- until God pressed upon my own heart that I need to do this as well. Giving that advice was great, but am I living it?

Ouch.

So as this next decade begins my goal is to do just that. It’s time I turn up the heat, launch the boat, and dip my feet into the water. (notice that I did not say jump right in… I am still a work in progress here.)(I am thinking “outside the box” though so that’s good right?) I hope and pray that by the end of the decade I will have jumped right into that ocean of possibilities- but for now I’ve decided to just step out of my little box and look for new opportunities and challenges. I’m uncomfortable, I don’t like the uncertainty one bit, but there is something inside that is loving this.

I’m fully planning to surround myself with more people who will kick my fanny just when I need it and I can’t wait to write to you all in the next 10 years and see who God has made me to be at the end of it.Want to get out of the boat with me?  Come on in the water is- freezing and scary and crazy and I don’t know exactly what it means… but this is going to be a ton of fun.

Happy-Why Can't Life Go As Planned -New Year…

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Isn’t this a great picture? Don’t we look like we are having a blast and just loving our time together?  Well we are…sorta, BUT- there is a very different reality behind this picture. So right now I want to give you a behind the scenes tour of what was really going on here.

First of all, my husband woke up with a fever and felt horrible all day. Originally, our plans were to have a great dinner together and play games late into the evening. Our oldest son and his wife would spend the night and we’d have the whole family here with us. I looked so forward to this time together. It was our middle son’s last night with us and I was ready to cherish every last second.

Instead, my husband ended up sleeping all day, only got up for dinner, and we didn’t let him touch anything. While he slept I frantically cleaned and disinfected everything he has ever even looked at in this house. We debated on having dinner together but decided that since it was Zach’s last night we’d go ahead with that part. Ryan got up long enough to eat, take a quick happy family selfie while not breathing on or touching anyone and then head back to the recliner. No games were played, no overnight stays from our older kids and Ryan was in bed by 9.

We were all disappointed but this is life and we roll with it right?

The next morning I got up and decided that I’d have coffee ready, put some bacon on, and spend some time with Jesus. I was determined to have a good attitude regardless of the disappointments of the night before and the dread of our son leaving tonight.

I may have gotten a little distracted while reading and praying this morning. Doesn’t this bacon look delicious? I literally had to scrape it from the pan, who knew bacon could stick so well?

I want to tell you that I sat and had a great cup of coffee while my family slept but I made the coffee and around here that says it all.

I can tell you this though- I enjoyed that coffee and I laughed at that bacon. 2020 may not have started the way I planned, but it’s still just as sweet. Last night my younger 2 sons and I talked for a very long time. We talked about everything, good, bad, funny, you name it. Then I went to bed exhausted and sad for this time coming to an end but so very grateful for every minute.

I wonder if things had gone as planned would we have had the time to talk?

I need to remind myself that there is good in the regrouping. There is hope in the burned bacon and the change of plans. Sometimes the silver lining is hard to find, but if we look close enough it is still there.

Guys, I’m not sure what 2020 is going to bring, I’m praying hard for a little less crazy and a whole lot more peace. I’m praying that the pictures I post on social media will be a little more transparent and a lot less perfect in appearance.

Photo Via Pixabay

Whatever comes our way, whatever this year has to bring I want you all to know that I love you, I’m so thankful to have you all with me on this journey through life and I will be praying for you too- every step of the way.

I Fail As A Mom- Do You?

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Do you ever browse social media only to be met by a myriad of posts portraying perfectly baked cookies, clean houses, and smiling families only to look around at your own burned cookies, floors that needed mopped ages ago and kids wrestling in the living room because someone has the remote and someone else wants it and you question every bit of your worth?

Image by Markus Spiske from Pixabay

Listen, I want you to know right  now that sometimes my house only appears clean because I angled the camera just right.

And my cookies usually turn out pretty good but I admit that at some point I burn a pan every single time I bake. It’s almost laughable.

The truth is- when I get on social media I can always find a reason to beat myself up as a mom, friend, wife…

Just looking at all the posts of holiday decorations and cookie platters I start to feel a bit unworthy of the season. I had good intentions too but the Christmas tree skirt is missing this year and so is the angel for the top so my tree is slightly naked. I’ve decided to just concentrate on the middle and not look at the rest.

The truth is comparison always leads to dwindling self esteem and negative self worth.

Image by Sabrina Ripke from Pixabay

I’m not a good mom because I didn’t bake cookies with my kids and I didn’t build a snowman when we had the latest storm like all the other moms on social media did.

There are a lot of I didn’ts in my life…  

If I’m being totally honest sometimes I’m not a good mom at all. Some days I really do stink at this job.

The reality is we all do. We all wake up and fail miserably. We all forget to put food in our kindergartners lunch pail, we forget the costume for the Halloween parade, we forget… but we don’t give up. That’s what makes us great. It’s not that we keep up with the neighbors or that we get on social media and remind ourselves of all that we “should” be doing to be awesome.

Instead it’s those little sleeping faces that we kiss on the cheek after a hard day and the smiles they give us when they wake up in the morning. It’s the giggling about the dinner that didn’t turn out and the pizza that was ordered instead.

It’s the mess that makes the memories.

Image by Aline Ponce from Pixabay

This weekend my son was in the hospital. Apparently he, like his brothers before him, can’t stand the sight of blood. We learned this the hard way when he cut his finger at school and then took a header onto the hard floor.

This lovely minute of time turned into an overnight hospital stay and a long road of recovery for this kid. Concussions are no joke.

He apologized over and over to me. He knew that I had other plans this weekend and a hospital stay was not one of them. But as we talked I told him this- I don’t remember much about the past few weekends and yes I would never choose for him to be hurt, but this weekend, as we lay in that dark hospital room will be one we talk about for years. We will harass him, we will pick on him, we will remember this.

And he will remember that I slept on a really horrible cold couch next to him all night. He will remember that his dad ran to the store for comfy clothes for him to wear, stayed late with us and returned early because he couldn’t stand to be away. We will remember that dad complained about what a rough night it was because the dog kept him up and how we must have had a much better night than him and how he may need us to rub his feet… (insert laughter and a HUGE NO here)

Image by silviarita from Pixabay

Being a good mom has nothing to do with cookies, crafts, vacations, or smiley family pictures. Being a good mom has everything to do with just being there. That’s it. There isn’t a formula, there isn’t a list that has to be completed. It’s just doing your best and loving them through it all.

Stop comparing yourself, stop failing because you don’t look like the perfect facebook family.

Instead, burn the cookies, mess up the crafts and learn to laugh. Be the mom that smiles not the mom that poses for perfect pictures.

Comparison is a thief of our joy.

God didn’t make a mistake, He knew what he was doing when he chose you to be their mom. So, love them well, pray for them always and enjoy life. Cookies will burn, kids will misbehave, and life will go on. 

Just choose to angle your camera to see the good in it all.

Why Winning Might Just be the Reason You Lose…

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I love winning. Who doesn’t?

In marriage we often take pride in winning arguments and being right.

My husband and I are both really good at this. Then we realized that always having to win regardless of each other, regardless of the consequences to our relationship, and regardless of what is best for our family may not be winning at all.

It’s pride.

 And pride does no good ever. 

Let’s look at the characteristics of pride together:

* Pride is boastful (1 John 2:16)

* Foolish (Mark 7:21)

* Stubborn (Leviticus 26:19)

* Attacks (Psalm 56:2)

* Causes Strife (Proverbs 13:10)

* Lashes out (Proverbs 14:3)

So why in the world do we fight so hard to win if the consequences damage the very thing we should be fighting FOR?

Sometimes I forget that we are on the same team. I forget that our arguments shouldn’t damage us. When I look at this list I can check every single box. Been there, done that. I’ve even genuinely won a few good “heated” arguments but when I look back, I can’t figure out what my prize was.

Image by pasja1000 from Pixabay

A better relationship? Nope

A closer friendship? Nope

A stronger marriage? Nope

I could go on and on, but the truth is- nothing good comes from pride.

So let’s bring this back to reality for a minute. I’d be lying if I told you that I never get mad, that we never fight and that to this day I don’t care about winning. Oh, I do care and believe me so does he.

BUT- we have also realized a few things over the years. God has spoken to each of us about our hearts, about being humble and kind. About putting others first and taking a deep breath and stepping back and seeing the bigger picture.

Check out the characteristics of being humble and kind-

Image by Bessi from Pixabay

* You will be sustained (Psalm 147:6)

* Victorious (Psalm 149:4) (I liked that one….) sorry…not sorry.

* Exalted by God (Matthew 23:12)

* Have Favor (1 Peter 5:5)

Still feel like you won that argument? I know I don’t. Pride causes us to say and do things we shouldn’t. Having a humble heart causes us to look with eyes of love and not worry about winning or losing, but to be concerned with the greater good of the relationship in the long term.

Jesus became a man, was mistreated, beaten, and died on a terrible cross by people who were mocking him. Yet, the whole time the scriptures say that he was praying for God to forgive them. Not a great way to win a fight, but an awesome way to win a war.

Pride has the potential to destroy our marriages, while a humble heart has the potential to build something we may have never thought possible.  

Maybe it’s not about right or wrong, maybe we don’t have to win. Just maybe we can disagree and work through our issues (and believe me we have quite a few…) without doing so much damage. I have started looking at what winning really means lately and for me, winning is still being married to this guy. (preferably happy) I’m not always great at backing down, seeing the other side of an argument, or being the better person, but I am a work in progress that wants to win more than the current battle that I am in.

I want to win the whole war.

Marriage Monday: Should I Respect My Partner Even If They Don’t Deserve It?

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Respect is earned, that’s for sure. So why should you ever be respectful of your partner if your partner is not respectful of you?

 I have to be honest here. I was the most disrespectful wife. The walls I had put up even before we married gave me the gift of a sharp tongue and a nasty disposition. I was owed something in this life and I let my husband know it. I didn’t trust easily and I wasn’t about to let my guard down.

 Did I deserve respect? I’m so embarrassed to admit this but the truth is I didn’t, not even a little. Thankfully, God had given Ryan the gift of forgiveness. He was able to look past my faults and love me anyway. He looked for things to appreciate about me and I’m sure if he were honest he would say that sometimes he had to search pretty hard.

Over time I softened and began to treat him with honor and respect as well.

We reap what we sow.

Ryan reaped respect because he had sown it for years. I reaped many ridiculously hard days because of my poor attitude. Today you choose which side you’re on. Your partner may not be worthy of respect either but you can still decide to give it.

Image by Free-Photos from Pixabay

God says that respect is a must. The dictionary describes it as a deep feeling of admiration for someone’s abilities. It changes us to know that someone actually believes in us like that. It was Ryan’s ability to think so highly of me when I knew I didn’t deserve it, that caused me to want to live up to that belief.

Today choose to be respectful of your spouse. Choose to focus on the good in them and start right where you are. Sow today what you want to reap tomorrow and you will reap great rewards in your relationship.

  • Just a little disclaimer here too- we fully realize that some situations may not fit the parameters of this blog. Certainly we don’t condone abuse of any kind and are not claiming that any of you should respect abusers. In fact, we encourage anyone who may be in an unhealthy or abusive situation to seek professional help. Our situation was neither abusive or unhealthy, we were just stubborn people with bad attitudes that needed work on our issues.

Ephesians 5:33

However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.

Prayer: Lord, show me how to better respect my spouse. Open my eyes to all of the great qualities that you have given them and help me to respect them for it. You say that respect is a must; I know there are many areas that I have fallen short in regards to respect. Please help me to do better beginning today. In Jesus name, Amen.

Marriage Monday – Why We Should Compliment Our Spouse!

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I remember a number of years ago, I had been asked to be in a wedding. My hair was done, I had put the bridesmaid dress on and Ryan walked into the room. He took one look at me and his eyes lit up and he said “Wow, you look amazing”.

I can’t tell you how great that moment made me feel.

Image by Pexels from Pixabay

My day to day routine doesn’t usually lend itself to him noticing me the way he did that day. My ripped up sweat pants, t-shirts, and pony tail certainly don’t match a really cute dress and a great hair stylist but I still think there are opportunities to show our spouse how much we like them.

Seriously LIKE them.

By finding opportunities to really build each other up, we also begin to build confidence in our spouse and our relationship. When you see your spouse doing something you appreciate, tell them. It seems that the longer couples are together the less they feel the need to express those little moments to each other.

But notice the scripture reference for this one. “How handsome you are, my beloved! Oh, how charming! And our bed is verdant.”

Image by Hans Braxmeier from Pixabay

A few good compliments and then a description of their bed being “verdant”. I couldn’t resist- so I looked up the meaning and found that it means- green, fresh, and flourishing. (and people say the bible is boring…)

Doesn’t sound too bad now does it? Listen, we all need to feel wanted, desired, and appreciated. We want to know that we matter and are not taken for granted. After we get married we get into a routine and routines often lead to complacency. It’s not intentional, sometimes it’s just survival. Today let’s start to build each other up and hopefully we can have that green, fresh, and flourishing relationship that deep down we all wish for.

Scripture reference:

Song of Songs 1:16 “How handsome you are, my beloved! Oh, how charming! And our bed is verdant.

Prayer: Lord, thank you for giving me a spouse that is unique and wonderful. Help us both to see and appreciate all that they do and to remember not to take any of these things for granted. Let us look with new eyes today and always remember how important it is to express our appreciation for the many things that they do for us. Open our hearts to each other and renew our love to the point that it spills out into our words. In Jesus name, Amen.

Holiday Craziness and the Thanksgiving Chicken

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Ok, so throughout this journey we’ve been pretty honest about the ups and downs of trying to get healthy, we’ve tried to focus on not worrying so much about weight loss and instead being attentive to how our body is feeling both physically and emotionally.

Now that the holidays are upon us I think it’s only right to really focus on enjoying them. We can’t always take ourselves so seriously and some days / years we really do have to learn to go with the flow.

Image by hudsoncrafted from Pixabay

I remember our first Thanksgiving as one of those previously mentioned years. We all know that the first year of marriage is hard (total understatement) and in addition to the normal adjustments that every couple goes through, we moved 18 hours from home. To top that off my husband had been transferred to a new base (he was in the Navy at the time) and we had absolutely no friends or family at all to help ease the transition.

We were married in September of that year and by November I had decided that I was going to make us a real Thanksgiving dinner even if it was just the two of us, so I made my grocery list and my husband and I headed to the store.

What we found when we got to the store is this- All of the turkeys are frozen. All of them. Who knew?

My husband was excited about this meal and was not about to let a little frozen bird get between him and a huge dinner.

Image by Ian Wilson from Pixabay

And to be honest I had never bought or cooked a turkey before. I just assumed that like other poultry that I had prepared I’d just walk in and grab a nice bird and Thanksgiving would go on without a hitch.

You know what they say about assuming…  Anywho…

Thanksgiving did not go on without a hitch.

There was no time left for a Turkey to thaw so we had to improvise. Grabbing the largest chicken we could find we went on our way. We laughed a lot that holiday and although we’ve had many great Thanksgivings together in the midst of some pretty crazy years- that is one that I remember best. The year we sat alone, miles from home, eating our Thanksgiving chicken in our tiny little apartment off the coast of Georgia.

I think the only holiday I remember even better is the one where I caught the turkey on fire in front of about 20+ family members. Lot’s of people still talk about that one.

Image by Pexels from Pixabay

Listen the truth is I don’t remember the years that went perfectly. The memories that are etched in my mind are the ones where things went haywire.

This holiday season, please laugh. Laugh at your mistakes, laugh at the salad that never gets to the table and is found hours after your family has driven away. Laugh at the gift tags that are lost until after the last package is wrapped and you have to use a sharpie marker on the gifts instead of a pretty bow. (Someone almost had a coronary just reading that one… Hehehehe)

Laugh. Relax. Enjoy.

Eat that piece of pie, maybe not the whole pie, but the big piece with the extra whipped cream, eat it. And then really look around- take it all in. The people, the joy, the home, the love. 

Image by Akusmo from Pixabay

Let go of the stress that the holidays bring and embrace them this year. What if you don’t get that handmade Christmas card done?  Listen, I just today had my son grab the melting pumpkins off the porch and throw them away. We just can’t do it all, but we can choose to find the blessing in it all. I’d rather have a boxed card from a friend than to know that my friends are stressed to the limit to create the perfect one. I’d rather have no card at all and to know that my loved ones are curled up on their couches with their families just lovin on each other.

Stop the crazy and choose the moments that truly bring you joy. Make this a holiday season to remember for all the right reasons.

So Happy Thanksgiving to you all. May this holiday season be filled to the brim with love and blessings for you and your family.

Our Journey Back to Health- Looking Back

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Sometimes looking back can really motivate you forward.  It’s crazy how far we’ve come. The new thoughts that naturally run through my mind now before I grab something to snack on are amazing. Is it processed? Does it contain massive amounts of sugar? How am I going to feel tomorrow if I eat this today?   

To be clear- I still make some bad choices mixed in with the good. Sometimes I make multiple poor choices in one single day. In fact just the other night I sat alone in the living room, I was bored, lazy and tired so I did what I knew I shouldn’t do.

I put a bag of potato chips on my lap and some good dip to go with them and I ate. I ate and ate and ate. The funniest part of the whole thing was that the only chips we had were from a fall picnic the day before and they were a flavor I didn’t even like. Every time I took a bite I was like- yuck I don’t even like these. So I put more dip on each chip to cover the flavor and pressed on.

Listen when I put my mind to something I do it right. Good and bad.

I laugh at this today because it shows me a few things. One, I have not arrived yet. This girl has a long way to go. Two, I have come so far. Less than a year ago when I began this journey to health, I would have let that moment be just another in my list of reasons to quit. I mean doesn’t it show that I can’t possibly win this battle? 

Image by Free-Photos from Pixabay

The answer is a firm NO. What it actually shows is that I am just a normal girl who sometimes makes bad food choices. (let’s just focus on food today and not the whole rest of my choices… I may need another bag of chips and more dip if we go too far here.)  But when I look at the big picture- when I really look back at all the days I did make good healthy choices, I’m pretty proud of my progress. My clothes are fitting great, I feel tons better, and I don’t stress the scale like I used to at all. In fact, sometimes I seriously forget to even get on it.

Most importantly- I’m thankful that I got started. I’m incredibly thankful that last January I decided to do this. What if I hadn’t? Instead of quitting because of a bag of chips and a couple days of eating everything in sight, what if I’d never even started?  Those are the scary questions for me. I certainly have lived those years too and they are the ones I regret. I wish I had started sooner, but man am I glad I started at all.

Really glad.

Listen if you need to make a change today. Make it. Don’t wait till tomorrow and beat yourself down for what you did 3 days ago. Give yourself permission to try and never give up. I can’t wait to hear from you a year from now and see your progress and listen to the pride in your voice as you take steps to accomplish your goals.

Image by Sasin Tipchai from Pixabay

Want to go to college?  Take a class. Want to lose a few pounds then start by making a small permanent change today that will bring you closer to that goal. The point is- START. You will never get closer to your dreams by sitting on them. Get up, pick up those dreams and fly. Life is worth living and a year from now I want to look back again and this time see how far WE’VE come together!

Marriage Monday: The IF word.

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There have been times when I’ve doubted my relationship. I’ve doubted my husband, doubted myself, and doubted our ability to pick up the pieces and figure things out. I’ve wondered if I made a mistake. Would I have been better off if…

If what?

If I’d married someone else? If I’d made different choices?

Image by Bessi from Pixabay

I read somewhere once that the reason the grass is greener on the other side of the fence is because of the large amounts of “fertilizer” that’s been applied. I’m going to jump right out onto that grass and say that we have enough crap of our own to fertilize all the yards we can handle. I don’t need someone else’s.

IF is a word that needs to be eliminated from our marriage vocabulary. It’s a very dangerous word that has absolutely no merit in our current lives and situations. The only way this word should be used is to ask the simple question- What if we try this to work it out. That’s it.  

The minute our eyes wander, the minute we think that our soul mate is the other guy (or girl)- the one created straight out of the perfect Hallmark movie and we must have not realized it so they got away and we’ve been left with the “other guy”- that scenario is the moment we lose in our relationship. (and by the way I am not in any way against Hallmark sappy, happy ending, frequently binged watched by this girl, love stories.) I just need to remind myself that there is reality and then there is… well perfectly scripted endings.

Image by StockSnap from Pixabay

Reality is far from perfect.

My reality is a lot harder work than I originally thought it would be when I said “I do”. Back then I had no idea how many sleepless nights the kids would cause. I didn’t know that I would be tired, stressed, worried… I didn’t know that there would be times when money would be so tight that we would search the house for loose change just to buy a book from the kindergartners book order. I didn’t know these things would be my reality but there were also a lot of other things that I didn’t know.

I didn’t know that my husband would work so hard for us. I didn’t know that he would be the most solid man I’ve ever met. I didn’t know that we’d laugh so hard our stomachs would hurt, that we’d watch our kids grow up and skin their knees, and make us crazy. I didn’t know that we were dreamers and planners and would spend hours talking about the trips we wanted to take and the excitement over our future. I didn’t know that so many good things would be woven into those trials. I’m so glad for all that I didn’t know. I’m really thankful that I’ve gotten to grow and learn and change right alongside the man that I didn’t know would not give up on me. Not give up on us. I’m so glad for that stubborn guy. (most of the time)

Image by Pusteblume0815 from Pixabay

What don’t you know? What lists can you make that can change your focus? What words do you need to eliminate from your vocabulary? Trust me in this- get rid of them. Focus on the great things, look at what you do have and quit worrying about how pretty the yard next door is.

Believe me it may take more fertilizer than you are prepared to deal with to make it look that good.