on growing up...
We learn about others, their culture, and their beliefs,
We discover traditions, history, and stories that have nothing to do with our own.
And we find ourselves.
Which may be one of the most important parts of the lifelong learning process. It is certainly the reason I am writing today.
Bear with me because despite what it may sound like up front, this is not a self-awareness speech as much as it is a good kick in the arse.
At least for me.
Because for many, many years I have stayed safely tucked away inside my comfort zone.
Secured tightly within the net of my beliefs, values, traditions, (which I still hold fast to, by the way)
and general way of looking at life.
And while it has been pretty darn cozy, the opportunity to enter the work world, spread my wings, and experience life was simply too much to resist.
And so I did.
I put away my spatula, hung my apron on the hook, and kissed my babies on the head.
Wishing them well as they venture into the world with a little less hand-holding from me, and holding my breath that I wouldn't fall flat on my face.
That was 10 weeks ago.
And I have learned a lot.
A lot about lawn care, a lot about customer service, and a lot about juggling work and home.
But there is more.
I have also learned a lot about me. Some of the things I like, and some of the things I don't like.
For one thing, I need a lot more affirmation than I thought I did.
No one at work sat me down and told me this. No one had to.
It occurred to me when I realized that some of the decisions I make are made to ensure the approval of those around me.
And how ridiculous is that?
Here I am winking at 40 years old, raising teenagers to be assured, confident adults, and I often let myself be dictated by the insecurities I've had since I was a kid.
And the worst part is that when you try to please one group, you will almost always let another group down,
which is a sure fire method for poking giant holes into your plan to be the one perfect person in the world.
So the moral of the story and the thing I have learned most since I've ventured from my cocoon,
boils down to two very important points about growing up,
even if you wait till you're almost 40 years old to do it...
1. Do not hide in your comfort zone. Get out into the real world and learn about others, as well as yourself. I guarantee you will be surprised at what you will find.
You will like some of what you discover.
You will be frustrated by some of what you discover.
And you will grow.
2. And while you are growing, and when you discover that you have faults, do the following:
Take a breath.
Recognize that you aren't perfect.
Commit to change.
And thank God for His grace. Then ask Him to help you extend that grace to two kinds of people that you come across...
a) others who aren't perfect
b) and yourself
Then eat chocolate and watch Gossip Girl, but that part is merely a suggestion in happiness, it is not necessarily a requirement.