Hello all, I have missed you on my time off. During my time away I have been enjoying motherhood, marriage, and rediscovering who I am, and whose I am. Something wild about me is, every since I was a little girl, I could not wait to turn 30. Can you imagine a little girl literally sitting in her room daydreaming about what her life would be like when she turned 30? Wild, I know. 30 was the magical year, I would think to myself. I was always, little Miss Grown, and I stayed listening to older women speak, and watching talk shows and panel discussions on TV. I remember one day watching a show and hearing women talk about turning 30. They made it sound so great and I knew my good side of life would start at 30 just like those women.
On the show the women said at age 30 there was this light bulb moment they experienced. They went on to say the thoughts and troubles they faced in their twenties, and how when they turned 30, they had learned a better way to deal with life’s hardships, thoughts, and emotions. Little Me thought when I turned 30, that would be it, life would somehow do a total shift and everything would be perfect! Well, I turned 30 in June, and well… no my life is not perfect. I know, shocker!
Although my life is not perfect, it is perfect for me. I’ve been on this road to better mental health the last few years, and God has been consistently taking me by the hand and walking me through the years of my life and showing me how He has been there at every stage.
I thought it would be great to share with you all some of my top life lesson’s I’ve learned in my 30 years of living. Tehehe, wow 30, that’s like official grown up age, lol.
With being hurt… Isn’t it something, that no matter your background, status, or culture, if you ask an adult if they have ever experienced hurt, they will have a story to tell. Whether you have been hurt in your past, or recently experienced hurt, those wounds left untended to, can still bleed out into your life. You’ll live your life, make decisions, enter relationships, and have thought patterns all based off the hurt you experienced. Some wounds that haven’t fully healed can still cause pain. It has been said that most of us have been hurt by people we love deeply, because if we didn’t love them so much, it wouldn’t have hurt us as bad.
When it comes to being hurt, I have learned to allow myself to feel. We get so busy trying to not feel hurt, that we don’t allow ourselves time to process. Acknowledge what hurt you, how it hurt you, and why. Sit with those feelings. Cry, yell, hit a punching bag, release those feelings, but before it all, pray. Now when you’re hurting its hard to find words to express everything you feel, but prayer involves your heart and spirit, not just your words. I have spent many nights with the prayer, Lord, I don’t know what to say, and He has always showed up and gave me comfort and strength to press on. When you reconcile with the pain you have been through, the road to healing is much clearer, because you know the area to start at.
With being afraid… I’ll say something my friend Nichole said one day at church, “Do it afraid”. Fear can be so constricting and it can hinder you from reaching your potential and purpose. In the Bible, God constantly had to remind people to not be afraid, and to be courageous. I’ve learned that having courage does not mean you are not afraid, it means you will not be stopped by your fear. There were many things I was afraid to do, and honestly there still are fears I’m working to conquer, but that’s just it, I have not stopped. Are you fearful of performing, messing up, starting again, trying again, loving again, or beginning something new? If you know that is what God is calling you to do, do it! No ifs, ands, or buts about it! The best way to conquer fear is doing the very thing you are afraid to do. People are waiting on you to be courageous, do it afraid!
With feeling beautiful… Ok ladies, come on, we all have been there. Well, I’m assuming I’m not alone when I say there are days I question what is looking back at me in the mirror! Seriously, it takes a lot of courage and strength to say to my cellulite, stretch marks, and rolls, “You are beautiful. I accept you for who you are. I may want you gone, but I celebrate you while you are here”. Child.…Strength!
One of my favorite memories with feeling beautiful was a moment in prayer. Follow me on this. I was in prayer and just sitting in awe of God, and all that He is, then I felt His presence like never before. I was captivated in the moment, and all I could say was, “I feel beautiful”.
Beauty was wholeness. Beauty was being comforted by a loving God that knew every part of my story. Beauty was spending time with the God of the universe, who decided He would come sit with me, and show me what beautiful truly meant and felt like. We are more than what we look like, we are what the Father says is worthy to be hand crafted and cared for. Build confidence in your beauty, knowing when God sees you, He sees completed perfection, because everything that God made, was good.
With feeling loved… One of the simple basic human needs that everyone has, is to be loved. When you feel loved, you feel worthy. Love makes you feel purposed and considered. When we walk around not feeling loved, man, the life we live is full of dim lighting. I don’t know you, and I don’t know your full story, but one thing I do know, is that God loves you. Did you not receive love from a parent, a partner, or a family member? Well, they missed out on the blessing that is called, you!
God loves you so much that He decided to give of His only Son, Jesus, to ensure you could experience a full relationship with Him. Do you understand how valuable you are? Don’t you dare walk around with your head down thinking no one loves you! Sure there were people who were supposed to show you what real love is, and they missed the mark. Learn from what they did, and you decide in your heart to love better, and allow love in again. Love is more than having someone to lay with at night, and far more than a pat on the back, and beyond a double tap on a post. Love is the knowledge that you matter to someone. If no one ever told you, I am telling you today, You Matter!
With being married… I love being married. I have been married for going on 12 years next month. Before my husband and I got married we used to stay up all night on the phone asking each other questions. Whenever we had a date night or a day to hang out, we asked each other every type of question we could think of. Why? We wanted to learn as much as we could about the other person.
In marriage you literally are asking two lives to join together and form a new life. We still ask each other questions and are learning more and more about one another. If you are facing challenges in your marriage, overcome them together. Make a joint decision to find the root of the issue/issues and carve out a plan to work together to make it to the other side of the problem. I have witnessed so many forget the For better or worse part of their vows. Marriage, just as life, goes through seasons. Today, figure out if you are enjoying the weather in the season you all are in, or if you all need a change in forecast. Learn your spouse, encourage them, believe in them, support them, laugh with them, pray with and for them, and show them the love they need in every season.
With being a mom… Whew mommas out there, I feel ya. I don’t even have to ask, but just know that I feel ya! Being a mom is one of life’s greatest gifts. God has entrusted you to carry new lives and generations in your womb. He has given you the responsibility to help shape the minds and life of future adults in our culture and society. You have also been given the challenge to not tell a 4 year old off! Ha!
Motherhood is this great gift that comes with lifelong badge earning opportunities. I have 3 boys, ages 6, 4, and 2. They make me laugh til I cry, and sometimes they just make me cry. My tears are not because of something they did, but because I do not take the seat of a mother lightly. I want to ensure that they become the men God has designed them to be. I realized I am their first experience of nurturing, love, biblical teachings, culture lessons, and life navigation. When they are grown they will make many decisions, and I want to help them know how to discern and choose the right ones. With all this responsibility I had to tell myself, “You will not be perfect”. Moms make mistakes. Moms have to say sorry. Moms sometimes have to take a moment of reflection and relaxation.
To all my moms out there I want to tell you to cherish every moment with your child. Let them make a mess sometimes. Go ahead see them jump off the couch. Watch them spill a whole cup of water. See them mimic you. Watch how they pose in pictures. See what makes them laugh. Watch the cues to the different emotions they experience. See it all and enjoy it. I was speaking with a sweet Grandmother one day about raising children and she told me the best advice she could give me was, “Give them good memories”. That stuck with me. Every now and then when I may get frustrated, when they have called my name 50 times, or I’m too tired to play tag, I say to myself: What do I want them to remember about this moment.
With having dreams… When I was a little girl I made a promise to myself. I promised myself that when I got older, I would do all the things I dreamed of doing as a kid. I didn’t want my big dreams to stay in my childhood. I told you all I was into hearing grown up conversations. There were so many times I would over hear adults talk about not living their childhood dreams because of life or bills. I determined that no matter what, I wanted to be able to say, As a kid I dreamed of doing….and I’m doing it!
Believe me, I know how up and down life can be. I understand your dream may take money that you don’t have, but faith is free darling! Believe not only in yourself, but in the God that put that dream in you in the first place. You have that dream for a reason. You may have a dream that people think is too big or too crazy. Well, get around new people. Get around people that will connect with your vision, and hold you accountable to see it come to pass. It can be tough to get people on board, if you first, don’t fully believe in it yourself. So, do a check in with you, are you the thing that’s standing in the way of your dreams? Believe me, there is no dream too big for God to do. Stop journaling your plans, and adding it to your vision board, and take an actual step and start making your dream a reality today!
With having faith… Ok you’ve made it to the last lesson! Look at you getting your positive reading on today. I am so proud of you. I have made it through so many devastating storms, and have overcome many tough challenges; and when asked how I did it, all I can say is Jesus. My faith in Jesus is my saving grace. I could not have made it to 30 without Jesus coming in and being a paramount part of my life.
I told you all in the beginning I have been on a journey to better mental health, and I give all glory and honor to God that I am in the headspace I am in now. I’ve been asked by non-Christians before how I maintain my faith in tough times. My answer changes from person to person and from year to year, because as time goes on, we face different faith battles.
I remember a moment a few years back when I experienced a trigger conversation. A conversation that causes a chain reaction of thoughts and or actions that stem from an old wound. After the conversation I had to go and pray, because I knew the road of thoughts that I would head down if I did not stop and pray. While in prayer, I started listing to God the things in my past that still troubled my mind, and how it basically sucked that I had to go through them. He gently replied to me, “I was there too”. He walked me through my past and told me how when I was going through, He was there with me. Do you think your heavenly Father finds joy in your hardships? He does not. He wants only good for you. We serve a God who is not emotionless, and who does understand our pain and seeks to deliver us and keep us so close to Him, that we find comfort through the rough times. I have faith because I know God can be trusted with my heart, my mind, my soul, and my life. When I don’t have the answers I run to the One who does. When I feel down, I know who will lift my head. In my 30 years of living, God has proven who He is to me, and I believe Him.