Tuesday, April 7, 2015

things I don't do (& the things I want my life to be about)

I want more adventure: the kind that both thrills and terrifies me, the kind that takes my breath away. I want the kind of adventure where I spend the whole time white knuckling it but look back and can only whisper "If that wasn't beautiful, I don't know what is"
I want more love: the kind that makes me forget how to breathe. I want more hand holding and being held close, more family dinners and times spent laughing with friends
I want more joy: more things that make me throw my head back in laughter, more surprises and moments bursting with happiness where all I can do is stand back and wonder how I was blessed with all this, more late summer nights and watching the sunrise and stars and poetry
I want grace: more and more grace, the kind that never runs out. I want to always be aware of that which I do not deserve but am so grateful for.
I want strength and bravery, courage and humility, equal amounts of softness and loudness
I want more people, more road trips where we drive too fast and take turns picking music, more nights staring up at the stars, more flowers in vases, more walks through the woods, more sunshine and coffee and poetry
I was thinking recently about what I want my life to be about. School is in it's final days, and I'm left to contemplate on all I've received here.
I was sitting in the sunshine earlier this afternoon, thinking about how I've been changed here. There are the obvious: the things I've learned about God, and grace, and trust, and love. The new relationships, the head knowledge, the heart knowledge. I learned how to forgive and let go and say yes and embrace. I learned how to be softer, gentler, louder, stronger.
At the beginning of the year I said I wanted this year to be about love. I wanted to know for certain what I believed and I wanted to love better.
Both of these things have happened, as I've learned what kind of God I believe in (a magnificent God) and I've been given ample opportunities to love until there is so much inside me it threatens to break my heart wide open.
And now, as I go into the summer, I'm thinking about what I want. And not just for this summer but for my life.
I want adventures and love and grace and strength. I want to not lose my fire, but to also allow myself to be soft sometimes. I want wildness and to forever be becoming something.
I heard it said once that a definition excludes all potential for change so I decided I don't want to be defined by anything. I want to always be changing, growing, becoming more of who I am.
I read an article by Shauna Niequist in which she was saying everything she was not. She's not a gardener, or do major home renovations. She doesn't make the bed in the morning or change clothes because simply because she's leaving the house, blow-dry her hair on a regular basis or bake. This is a list of things she was willing to not be in order to be and do what she really wanted.
I think of the things I'm willing to not be in order to be who I really want to be
I want to be full of love, so at some point during this year I realized that pain and love aren't the same thing, and therefore I had the choice not to surround myself with people who just stole my energy and light. I realized that not everyone is going to like me, but I've found the ones that do and am so grateful to them for that.
I want to go on crazy adventures, so I say no to the things I don't want to do and yes to the things I do, even if the things I say yes to scare me. I'm surrounding myself with people and things that make me brave, and push me.
I want joy so I'm counting my blessings and not my complaints
I'm not superwoman. I'm not the honor roll student, or the social butterfly. I've cut back on wearing makeup simply because I like sleep in the mornings, I don't routinely spend time with people who steal my energy so I have more time to spend with people who fill me up, I don't spend hours working on homework because I think the education I get from living is more important than the one I get from books.
I'm willing to not be things in order to be who I really want to be, and do the things that are important to me, and to spend time with the people I truly care about.
For a moment there was absolute panic over not being everything to everybody. Sometimes there still is.
But I think there's also something freeing about it. There is work here that is only mine to do, which includes loving my family and friends, building into these relationships and telling the stories that are mine to tell.
I guess what I want from life is to live my story well. I want this story - which is constantly being written and rewritten by God's very hand - to reflect how I used what I had to love well, to live fully, to laugh often and to enjoy this beautiful life I was given.

It's not hard to decide what you want your life to be about. What's hard is figuring out what you're willing to give up in order to do the things you really care about.

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