At first I thought, maybe I'm just more vain than I thought! (I do feel like I came into myself a little in my twenties from my bushy-browed, no idea how to dress, long hair was doing nothing for you high school self..ah what did Benny see in me). I admit I have wondered if I've "hit my prime" looks wise. My friend with "older" sisters assures me they look better than ever! Less sleepless nights, little more time to themselves. And then I thought of my "older" friends, and they're all gorgeous! Regardless, I think I knew it was something deeper than grey hairs and laugh lines.
Not it at all.
And then it came to me.
It's because to this point, it was easy to think about who I wanted to be...one day. All excited and hopeful, but kinda non-commitally(?) Yet, with this birthday has come the nagging feeling that I better start being her, not one day but now! Not that life is over (by any means), but that the time for good intentions sorta is.
In the words of a very wise (and fairly forthright) women I love:
"You ain't gonna be a nice old lady, if you ain't trying to be a nice young one."
I stumbled upon this and then this, both beautiful birthday posts, by a beautiful lady I've loved learning things from as I in this past year (finally) tiptoed into this amazing blogging world.
Her self-acceptance and self-relations were so soft and kind. Like a little note from a friend would be, except it was from herself.
And that made me think this year I'd like to become my own good friend.
To only tell MYSELF things I would tell a good friend. So that even if there's some needed honestly I would deliver it gently,with lots of love.
Pres. Uchtdorf (apparently my fav as of late) so kindly reminded us:
Dear sisters, many of you are endlessly compassionate and patient with the weaknesses of others. Please remember also to be compassionate and patient with yourself.
Okay so in the spirit of those posts that inspired me so much
DA da da DAAAAA!
things I've learned.
1. People like me. Not everyone. But in general I am a likeable person.
I've spent...well, let's see now, 30 years I guess...doubting my like-ability, always assuming people didn't like me, second guessing people's intentions, and doubting new friendships. All springing from my own insecurities, which blinded me to the generosity and goodness of so many around me, stuck in my own issues. Dumb. Dumb. Dumb. It's so much better to focus on others and let them know what you see in them, and show gratitude for who they are and stinkin' forget yourself already. Insecurities may still be there, but I've learned we need to just push through, instead of letting them hold us back and just assume the best of people (including ourselves) Because people are so good.
2. A good playlist can replace hours of counseling/cry sessions/general moodiness.
This lovely lady has sung me through a lot of moods this past year.
3. Friends...hmmmI can't even think of a way to express strongly enough how important, and life-saving good friends are to the quality and joy in my life.
But I've also learned other people usually can say it better than me, so I'll let Sister Hinckley take this one (seeing as I count her one of my "friends", as I've learned so much from her life;)
“We are all in this together. We need each other. Oh, how we need each other. Those of us who are old need you who are young, and hopefully, you who are young need some of us who are old...We need deep and satisfying and loyal friendships with each other. These friendships are a necessary source of sustenance. We need to renew our faith every day. We need to lock arms and help build the kingdom so that it will roll forth and fill the whole earth.”I've learned it is totally worth building "deep and satisfying and loyal friendships" (and it's also okay to say goodbye to relationships that just never seem to get there...they may re-surface later)
― Marjorie Pay Hinckley
4. Figuring out what you want ( and actually asking for it) can take some effort, but it's worth it.People who truly care will respond, because they want you to be happy as much as you want to be happy.
5. I don't hafta take the best pictures, or write the best blog, the process just has to be mine, and that is what will make it of value.
6. Learned this again today from Rhonda
A friend and I were talking about comparison, and how back in the day women compared themselves to women on their block, and now (via lots of media sources) we have a whole world of women to compare ourselves to.
Not to mention see what everyone else is doing.
7. Nothing feels as good as increasing others joy.
8. Me and Ben make thee cutest kids, hands down, period.
9. Being a mom isn't who I am, but it has contributed more than anything else in my life to who I hope to be. I look into these boys eyes and feel them inviting me to be better. I'm there everything, and I'm so unworthy of it. I am so imperfect and yet they forgive and forget all my spazing, and love me just for being theirs (I know this won't always be so, but I need to hold their image of me now, and try to always live up to it).
10.I've learned that rockin out to the Goofy Movie soundtrack does not make me immature, it makes me awesome. (Tevis Campbell's biggest fan! Go ahead click it, i know you want to! mid-ninties rock at it's finest)...this one probably only came to mind due to this morning iPod shuffle.
11. I've learned that a good chat can get you you through even the worst of days.
And that I was meant to be a mom in the days of wahing machines, long distance phone calls, and microwaves.
12. We should hug more. And longer. (All this supposed awkwardness if starving us emotionally...Aaron taught me that one.)
13. It's okay to spend money on myself. (okay I'm still learning this one, but I'm getting better)
14. I've learned that although romantic love tends to get more attention, it will never surpass the glory of everyday concern and caring. "We love those we serve." And Ben may not be Mr. big gestures, but he serves me unceasingly. Even if we try and pass off diaper changing duties, or really wish the other person would get up to attend to which ever child decided to wake up this time...really, when it comes down to it, Ben would do anything for me. And I would do anything for him.
15. I've learned a lot of happiness is too be found in managing (identifying, owning, adjusting, expressing etc etc) our expectations.
16. I've learned I don't like shell fish, but I do love fish. And that I'm horrible at deciding what I want off a menu. Horrible.
17. I've learned I probably don't need as much sleep as I think, but I've also learned you simple can not discredit the effect of exhaustion. Sometimes a nap is the ONLY way to make it better.
18. I've learned (okay I'm stil working on this one too) you can't please everyone. You can try really hard, but it just ain't gonna happen. And if you manage to please the majority, feel really good about that.
19. I've learned that you have to redefine "success" day by day.
20.I've learned that the temple is always a good choice. I'd think maybe I should go to the temple and then vacillate, everything else vying for time too. I've never once regretted going, but I sure have regretted not going, so I shoudl just go.
21. I've learned that for being a "talker" I'm not very good at prayer. But I'm pretty good at directing my thoughts to God (kinda like my phone friends I carry around the house, often chatting, but sometimes just "being there"). I'm workin' on my kneeling prayers, but right now my driving, cleaning, folding laundry prayers tend to be my "best chats" with Father.
22. I've learned their are may ways to camouflage pride. And many we do unwittingly. I'm trying to figure mine out, so I can illuminate them, and be humble instead. Aren't humble people your fav?
23. I've learned "growing out" my hair is a waste of time. I just suffer though the awkward stage until I inevitably give in. I like this hair cut and I'll probably die with it.
24. I'm learning right now, I'm ridiculous... this post is JUST fine, but I see how close
I am to 30 and can't help myself from going on. Bear with me folks.
25. My fav topic is the gospel. There is just so much to it and anything worth anything is connected to it.
26. I've learned yelling does NOT make me feel better. Wish it did. But it doesn't.
28. I am always learning and constantly amazed at the versatility of the word of God. It has endless messages for our Spirits, personal and perfect, every time.
29. I've learned (/admitted) that words are my passion, whether they're my own, or song lyrics or good movie quotes, I live for hearing things described in unique ways that make me understand things better then I did.
30. but I've also learned the best things are indescribable.
like maybe all the things I've learned in 3 decades of life!
oh well I gave it a shot.