May 26, 1982. 35 years ago. At times I can't believe that I'm a 35 year old woman who is married with two children. Other times I think WOW, only 35 and I've experienced so much. So much, that I've decided to share with you some valuable lessons that I've learned in the past 5 years.
They say you don't really know a person until you know what they've been through. The past 10 has brought me some very high high's and some low's I didn't think I could recover from. As my pastor would say, "Thank God I don't look like what I've been through", is now not just a saying, I am actually thanking God every day for grace and growth! I'm not sure if I have chosen to be more introspective or if that is just what happens when you reach this age but, these are five valuable lessons I've learned!
1. FORGIVE. To move forward, it's a must. To find inner peace, it's a must. A friend of mine once gave me great advice. She said, "Remember that forgiveness is for you and not for the forgiven. Forgiveness does not mean fellowship." Moving through pain is never easy but getting to the other side is freeing.
2. LOVE YOURSELF. I realized this year that I can't take a compliment. Someone might say "You look beautiful" and my response might be "really?! I don't feel it!" or "Thanks, but I don't like my hair."......... I had a quiet moment with myself and asked why? Why am I so quick to say something negative about myself? I discovered that I am really not as confident as I put on (hard to admit). I have insecurities and that's ok but there are also somethings about myself that I've had to learn to embrace. I am not perfect but I am the perfect me!
3. YOUR PARENTS CAN ONLY GIVE YOU WHAT THEY'VE GOT. For the first time in my entire life, I look at my parents and see people and not my mom or my dad. It's a very interesting and telling perspective. I now know that I was "raised" by two very broken individuals. They did the best that they knew how. The rest is up to me. *see number one*
4. DON'T DEPEND ON ANYONE ELSE FOR YOUR HAPPINESS. Being happy is a choice. Leaving your happiness up to someone else will always let you down! Choose you! Go places, do things, eat food, hang-out with, read things that make you happy!
5. TRUST YOURSELF. There have been so many times that I have gone against my intuition. Times when I have gone against what I thought was best because I compared myself to someone else. When I started newtexacaligal.com I looked at other successful bloggers and I tried to imitate what they did. FAIL. Being the best version of yourself is what makes you stand out. People appreciate authenticity! Plus, it's just easier to be yourself! It took me awhile but I finally trusted myself enough to be me!
An abbreviated yet accurate version of the knowledge I've gained. The marriage, kids, separation & job loss will be on another post! Or we can talk over lunch *insert wink emoji* I'm leaving my thirty fourth year of life feeling confident about who I am and where I'm going!
Yes, this is a shameless post to show you all how hot I look in these pictures! It's also to hopefully provide some inspiration! Looking good is not only about physical attributes. It starts from within! Knowing who you are, being confident, eating good food, enjoying and surrounding yourself with great friends and family......... You must take care of you!