My 40th year.
You ever feel like you need a good, swift kick in the pants to get it all together?? That's what looking down the barrel of 40 feels like to me. Time to get things right. NO. MORE. EXCUSES. I'm working on a list right now of the 40 things I'm
To be honest, I've pretty much dreaded this next birthday, and to be even more honest, I've not been very pleased with myself for my attitude. I think it's finally time to turn it around..... to be grateful for this journey and appreciative of all the lessons I've learned in these almost 40 years. I'm not getting old..... just getting wiser, right?
So all this reflection on my 40th year led to some thoughts about this last decade for me and Jonathan and our family. It's 2010...... ten years ago in 2000, well, life was quite different. And it's hard to believe how quickly 10 years passes. I started thinking back this morning over all the changes..... all the triumphs and struggles, the good -- the bad and, of course, all the growth of our last 10 years. I thought I'd share a little of our decade-long ride..... from those days we thought we knew everything to these days we realize we really don't know very much at all. That's what maturity will do to ya......
Let's see...... the last 10 years beginning January 1, 2000......
Married 1 1/2 yrs, built 1st house, had 8 month old baby. So happy to be a mom. So happy not to be throwing up anymore. Saved water for Y2K (remember that?) Fussy baby. Very focused on fussy baby. Got no sleep. Felt kinda zombie-like. Lots of crying. Lots of laughing. Lots of spoiling. Lots of feeling blessed. Jonathan hunted. I painted ALOT. Decorated ALOT. Went to Atlanta ALOT. Gave up my antique business. Stopped nursing. Got pregnant again. Got sick. Really sick. Lost lots of weight. Took lots of drugs. Had to take care of baby, too. Not so happy. Market was up. Jonathan was happy. Sold house to 1st person. Bought bigger house. Loved it. Decorated it.
It was 2001. Had baby. Named her Macy. She was amazing. No crying. Very sweet. Had ear issues. Went to Children's Hospital. Had surgery. All was better. Loved my two precious girls. Felt even more blessed. Loved dressing them alike. Made lots of clothes for them. Smocked alot. Loved watching them grow. Spent alot of time on a ladder. Decorated some more. Went to Atlanta some more. 9-11 happened. Very worried. Market crashed. Jonathan's career almost crashed. Wished we wouldn't have bought that big ole house. Tough times. Jonathan hunted. Decided to take a big risk and move to Auburn. Sold house to 1st person again.
It was 2003. Loved Auburn. Loved it, loved it, loved it. Jonathan had to commute. Girls were best friends. Found house to fix up and make money. Work. Work. Work. Paint. Tile. Ladders. Yard. Paint. Sew. Made great friends. Girls were growing and happy. Market picked back up. Jonathan was happy and he hunted. We felt we made the right move.
It was 2004. Got phone call.... car wreck.....Sarah died. Devastated. Buried our 14 year old niece. Life forever changed. Got pregnant. Thrilled. So sick. Couldn't hold my head up. Lost lots of weight. Girls learned how to use the microwave (seriously, at 3 and 5). Felt horribly guilty. At 12 weeks, lost baby. No heartbeat. Miscarriage. Devastated again. Madison started kindergarten. Jonathan hunted. Organized huge silent auction for kindergarten. Poured heart & soul into it. Raised LOTS of money. Got pregnant again in 3 months. So very, very sick. Girls started using microwave again. Lots of drugs. Home health care. Lots of self-administered shots. No sleep at all. Rough time.
It was 2005. Found out baby was a boy. Was so excited. Decided to build "dream house." Had precious boy. Named him Jacob after his cousin who died (Sarah Jacobs). Was so relieved to know I would NEVER again be pregnant. YEE-HAH!! Three kids. Very happy. Sold fixer-upper before we put a sign in the yard. Got lucky and made lots of money. Obsessed over building house. Completely immersed in designing, choosing finishes and decorating. Lots of work. Lots of time. Lots of meetings. Jacob went with me everywhere. Loved every minute of it. In my element. Jonathan was happy and he hunted.
It was 2006. Finally moved in new house. Felt so very blessed. Family complete - check. Home built - check. Decided to take a break and just enjoy. Stopped working. Macy started kindergarten. She decided she was a "boy." I decided to not get in her "creative" way. I made lots of friends. Loved my neighborhood. Loved my life. Had Halloween party to celebrate. Had more parties.... brunches, Christmas, back to school. Loved entertaining.
It was 2007. Madison was in 3rd grade, Macy in first. They decided they didn't like each other anymore. Jacob turned 2. Organized another school silent auction. Got friends to help. We worked really hard. Raised lots of money. I still wasn't working. Had too much time on my hands. Started reflecting on my life, my choices. Had a mini- mid life crisis. Felt lots of regret. Eventually worked through it. Saw God's purpose for my life. Trusted His plan. Realized that maybe I should "get back to work" and stop reflecting. Jonathan hunted.
It was 2008. Started a blog. Discovered Photoshop. Turned into designing blogs. Learned more about Photoshop. Turned into designing Christmas cards. Life was looking up. We celebrated our 10th anniversary. Went to the Dominican Republic. The economy tanked. Jonathan's life took a nose-dive. Merrill Lynch was in trouble. Jonathan started looking elsewhere. After 19 years, he changed jobs. Lots of transition. Lots of scary moments. He handled it well. I was very proud. He celebrated by hunting.
It was 2009. Jonathan started at Wachovia. He liked it. Saw lots of opportunities for growth. Economy still awful. Friends losing jobs. Times were hard for lots of people. Jacob made me laugh. Madison made me crazy. I made Madison crazy. I still loved her. Macy stopped being a "boy." Mommy couldn't have been happier. Madison grew like mad, became a young lady. Hormones were raging. Jonathan turned 40. He took it like a man. We went to Disney. Mother Leva died. I turned 39 and sweated turning 40. Realized I'm not as brave as my husband. Madison started 5th grade, Macy 3rd and Jacob turned 4. I was proud of them...... I am proud of them! We had a wonderful Christmas..... except for the chicken pox. We all feel blessed. Life is good.
So, all in all, I guess if I went back to that place in January of 2000 and could see into the future, I think I'd be happy with where we are now. We've overcome lots of obstacles, grown stronger as a family and laughed alot all along the way. I have no idea what the next 10 years holds...... the thought of 3 teenagers in the house is quite terrifying to me..... but I look forward to it..... the lessons I'll learn..... hopefully, the wisdom I'll gain. I guess I'll start by completing my list of 40 things to accomplish before I turn 40 -- Like I said, I love a challenge and maybe that's exactly what I need to go forward into this year with a new outlook on my forties......
"Go confidently in the direction of your dreams! Live the life you've imagined.
As you simplify your life, the laws of the universe will be simpler."
- Henry David Thoreau
Here's to the next 10 years!!