I love fresh beginnings! I also love the changing of seasons. The start of a new school year always holds such promise! The thought of a clean slate is like a breathe of fresh air to me. I am learning though that being realistic with my beginnings is of ultimate importance! I tend to think I can do everything, all the time….even when I am focusing on pulling back, I can tend to try to do too much. Too much of stuff that is really of little importance when I step back and look at the big picture.
So here is to fresh starts…new beginnings that include margin and realism!
What does that look like?
Well, it probably looks like failing a time or two (or twelve)…
It probably looks like refocusing a few times before we get the school year schedule worked out correctly. And then being willing to work out the kinks a few times again..even after we thought we had this thing down!
It probably means letting go of some of the things you did last year that you have always done before. This is a new season, you are not the same person you were before. Your family is not the same as it was before…little people are growing, they are changing and developing new interests, new dilemmas need solving, new talents are emerging, new pajama pants need to be purchased due to endlessly growing legs.
It probably means working harder to spend time with your spouse…cause let’s face it…that time together tends to get squeezed out of the daily/weekly agenda before anything else does. Guilty..oh so guilty of this offense!
It means realizing that where you are right now at this very moment in time is not where you will ever be again. A sobering…inspiring…thought provoking…challenging realization.
There are many things in my life that I would love to push a pause button on. Moments that are so beautiful that I want them to last forever…but I know that they will not. So these moments are going to get more of my time, my unhurried time. I will never regret the time I spend tucking freckle faced littles in bed at night and listening to the last thoughts of their day. Hearing what mattered to them today. Sharing giggles when kissing cheeks good-night. I will also never regret the time I spend with my husband, sharing dreams and jokes that have lasted years together. Things only he and I understand.
These moments I love.
There are other moments that I know I shy away from because they are difficult. Difficult. A word that we would probably rather live without.
Yes, that is a better idea…let’s do without difficult.
We must have difficult. We must.
Difficult can bring new beauty like nothing else can.
Yes, you read that correctly.
Difficult brings beauty. We must learn to lean in to difficult in order for the beauty to be found.
These words I hear playing over and over in my mind as of late.
Leaning away is much easier in the moment. That choice will never bring beauty though. When I feel pressed, leaning away is the road well traveled. Resistance does not come with that road. She is laid before me, well worn, welcoming and inviting, beckoning me to travel her once again, laying aside my goals and dreams for the easy path. Leaning away is marked with a signpost that reads “SETTLING”. That path is not ours.
Leaning in to difficult means carving out time for me in my day. Yeah, that is difficult for me. It feels selfish. But it’s not selfish at all. It is life-giving. I am a better, wife, mom and person when I have time to nourish my soul. How can I pour into others when I have nothing left to give them? It never works out for very long unless I have invested in myself in some way.
So, I will start this new season with leaning into me. There are so many things I wish to do. I will start with one ‘difficult’ and then another until leaning in is as natural as dreaming itself.
How about you? Are there goals for yourself that run on repeat in your mind throughout your day? Dreams that have been pushed aside? Plans that you let go of?
This new season is for you!
No matter if you are entering 7th grade or your 70th year, this is yours! You just have to lean in…don’t shirk back!
You, brave one are worth the struggle.
You are worth everything!
You were never meant to settle.
Yes, there are times in life that we must put things on hold. But there is also a time to hold new things.
Let your imagination wander.
Who are you?
What holds you back?
What are you afraid of?
Crush your fears….slay your doubts…be YOU! Be the truest you can possibly be.
This choice you will not regret!
Go back to your calendar, your schedule and write in time for yourself (even if that means saying no to an activity for your children, they will be ok…you can say no…gasp!). Get that ink pen out and write down what you need to lean into. Set your mind to this task. You may feel pressed at first but then you will feel like you can breathe fully. Difficult is often the gateway to the best parts of living.
Let’s live fully! There really is no other way to live!
With Much Love,