Turning 40 made me extra-reflective about everything. This past year was so full of thoughts and plans and declarations, it makes me a bit tired thinking back to everything I squeezed into it.
In the middle of it all, I faced some some hard truths last year and had to make the time to decide what was really, really important to me.
How's my marriage? What did I want for my children at this stage of their lives? Am I taking care of my body? Am I making myself available for God's calling? Am I even listening for it? What do I love, and what am I doing about it?
Addressing these is helping me re-order my priorities, rip off some band-aids and start this transition.
Here's what I know for sure, now (in no particular order):
- I am an introvert who can no longer pretend to be an extrovert. Large groups and busy gatherings exhaust me and I need regular periods of quiet alone time to thrive.
- My marriage is both strong and tender. It does not have an auto-pilot feature and must be a vessel through which our children and other couples can learn about grace, humility and the joy that results from them.
- My children are getting older and may all leave home, quite plausibly, within the next ten years. I cannot dillydally with the lessons I want to teach and exemplify.
- I want to meet the world. Travel outside of North America is a new priority.
- I want contribution and generosity to be natural responses, with less calculation or hesitation.
- I value hospitality. I want to explore different ways to practice it.
- I am not good at housekeeping, inside and out (you should see my backyard right now). I am no longer a lover of baking. I don't enjoy planning parties like I used to. And that's all okay.
- I love reading (memoirs, mostly) and I love writing (run-on sentences, mostly).
- I want to figure out what foods, exercise regimes and general practices are best for my own health.
- God is my Number One. Jesus is my Example. The Holy Spirit is my Guide.