Occasional notes from my second daughter. I never know what to expect when she writes but I am always blown away. Did this child come from me? Read on!~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Hi friends. Welcome back to my random contributions on my mom's blog. Earlier this week I found an old notebook from 3rd grade and might I say it was the best laugh I've had in a while. In honor of my 6-year-old writing dreams I've decided to make a list of 5 things I've learned (because 23 and 2+3=5) this past year that can be applied to any reader.
1. Rushing won't make you ready: Matter of fact, rushing leads to repeating. Because most of my life has been accelerated outside of my control (i.e: being 6 years old in the 3rd grade) my goals have often been informed by what I thought others expected of me and not necessarily what I wanted for myself. For me the golden age of which I should have had my life together was 22 (6 years after graduating high school), so when my birthday came last year and I realized my life was not what I expected it to be, plus the overwhelming nothingness that occurs after graduating college, I went into a bit of a depression. While a lot of people met me with support, many people wanted to rush me through this process. I understood their intentions but I had to protect myself by being present. I could not, and still can't rush the timeline of my growth if I wish for that growth to be sustainable.
2. God's voice overrides any sound advice: This one is self-explanatory but I'm reinforcing it for anyone who struggles with courage. Second-guessing is the first step to confusion. Never stop seeking God's voice; it is the clearest guide for your entire life. If His instructions are repeated, follow them. If his answers are unclear, ask more questions. But a hunger for an abundant God should never be fed by anyone else but God. I've had to question this year, "Do I really care what God wants for my life?" When I'm unsure, I think about my commitment to Him and His to me. It's not enough to be a "good person" who does "good things". It's best to be God's, no matter where He has you.
3. 75% of the people you dislike love God and God loves 100% of them back: My mom and I had a conversation yesterday in which I talked about driving in LA. "I'm a good driver, it's just annoying that I constantly have to be a good driver in the midst of terrible ones." Life isn't linear, it doesn't happen in a vacuum of pure joy, and it surely doesn't occur in the midst of perfect people. Just because challenges arise doesn't mean that all the growth you've experienced has been thrown out the window. Quite frankly everyone's obsession with being a "healthy" person these days is kind of funny to me because their endurance can be so low (mine included). Yes, remove toxic people from your life but don't expect the people you're left with to be perfect. Don't expect the new healthy circle you attained to exist without challenges. Idealism is not healthy. Also, it's ok to address your own toxicity which leads me to the next point.
4. You can't run away from yourself: God is Alpha and Omega, here from beginning to end. He's is eternal. You are not (yet), but for as long as you are here, you will always be with you, from your beginning to your end. God is growing you and in that growth, you must be an active participant. The partnership of God's being and your being is a progressive one. Every time you run away from Him you stop the process, just as every time you run away from yourself. There is some solace in knowing that God would never run away from you; that His covenant and His choice are one in the same, but we cannot just settle for this. It's a beautiful thing to face yourself in order to see just who God is in your life.
5. Celebration is more than praise: Humans forget. Laughing at my old journal this week was wonderful because it showed I've been consistently Gabrielle Nicole Miller all of my life, even when I forgot who I was. The previous point was about mindfulness, this one is about remembering. All celebration and gratitude really are, is choosing to focus on memories of goodness. Goodness has happened over a series of time and will happen again in seasons to come. It's our mental incentive to keep going. It reminds us that there is more. More than we can imagine even though we try to imagine accurately every day. It's a reminder of how small life is and how incredible life is. Celebrating yourself, others, accomplishments, God, etc. is key to building a lifestyle that has no need to rush because you understand that every season brings it's fruits even if you don't see them yet.
I hope you all enjoyed my reflections. If you can relate please comment below and let me know which point really stuck with you. Lastly, thank you all for being on this journey of growth with me. I've been writing on my mom's blog for at least 4 years now and the community here is always a blessing :) And thank you, mom, for bringing me into this world on this day 23 years ago.