Part of living gracefully is being content with where you are and what you have. Living in the moment instead of the past or wishing for the future to be here now.
There was a time in my life where I couldn’t reach my goals fast enough. I wanted it all NOW. I needed the perfect house, the perfect job, the perfect life. It all revolved around the “things” I needed to make that life happen.
I look back on that person now and I am so sad. That girl was so naïve and had no idea how good her life really was in those moments.
While I still have a desire for “things” the difference is that my happiness no longer depends on them. I don’t need the house, the job or the “perfect” life to be happy. I don’t need any more blessings than the ones I already have. If I never received another blessing in my life I could and would still be completely happy.
So what changed?
Life. It happened. Things that only happen to “other people” happened to me.
I realized that life is fragile. It can be short. It can be heartbreaking.
I don’t want to take any moments for granted anymore. I refuse to wish my life away or base my happiness on achievements and perceived progress.
I turn 30 day. I used to dread the day I would say goodbye to my 20s because I saw is as a sign that my life was passing me by. Today all I can say is Thank you God for gracing me with this day.
Not everyone makes it to 30. So many people don’t. Seriously. I can’t stress this enough. If you make it to your next birthday praise God for his provisions.
When Little E was going through chemo there were times where I would lay in bed with her at night, covered in vomit and wonder if she would make it to her 2nd birthday. I can’t even describe that feeling. When we were planning her 1st birthday, I was a wreck. I NEEDED it to be perfect because it might be the only one she ever got to celebrate. Heartbreaking.
When I hear other people complain about their impending birthday, I want to show them pictures of children that I knew that died while Little E was going through treatment. Babies, toddlers, school aged children. Do you know what they would have given to age like the rest of us? Do you know what their parents would have given?
Today I have gray hair. I’ve had it for a while now. I’m okay with it. Sure, I get my hair highlighted but I am not ashamed that I have grays. I’m proud of them. I walked through hell with my daughter and we both survived. If I had to get a few grays on the way I think I can handle that.
I noticed a few months ago that the lines on my forehead are getting deeper. I’ve got a few lines around my eyes and mouth when I smile. Praise God that I have lived enough years to gain those wrinkles. I have been able to smile so many smiles that they are now permanently etched in my face. They are beautiful reminders of a happy life.
Growing older is a privilege denied to so many.
Please stop complaining.
Please stop hiding your age.
Stop being ashamed of your age.
It is insulting to the memory of those that don’t get to experience the process of aging.
Look around you right now. Count the blessings that you have. I’m sure there are many that you haven’t even thought were blessings. You do not need to define a life by the “things” that you fill it with. The addresses, titles, bank accounts are nothing compared to experiences, moments and people. These things that really matter.
I hope you lived a blessed life from start to finish. The reality is that you probably wont. We are meant to be tested in this life, we are meant to endure trials. Don’t wait until your trial starts to realize what you already have.
Make a change today. Embrace your years, embrace the life you have right now.