Well, I did it. I had another birthday. I keep asking them to stop coming and they never listen. When I was 32, I read that being 31 is the most empowering of a woman’s life. She is usually situated happily in a relationship; she has a great career; and she is a peace with who she has become. I somehow missed it. At 31, I was pregnant, having a second child, on maternity leave, and sleeping very little. Where was my amazing 31st year? I was so busy in fact that I didn’t even know I missed my “powerful” 31st year until I was already 32 and the magical year had passed me by. Ah, but such is life and I do dearly love that Little Monkey who came into my life during that 31st year.
Personally, I preferred 27 or 28. They were great years. And not because I didn’t have kids, well maybe, but I wasn’t in the dreaded 30s (which now I acquiesce are just lovely) and I was just past the trying age of 25 when everyone still assumes you are a kid and need their sage advice. I was full of energy and excitement for what I did, a teacher, coach, actress, wife, and friend. My husband and I were blissfully in love and did everything together. It may be one of the longest “honeymoon” periods on record, since we were married when I was 23. It was amazing! I felt as if the whole world lay ahead of me and there were endless possibilities.
And here I sit behind a desk, typing at 33. This is all the life Jesus got to live in bodily form. That is enough to inspire any believer into some self evaluation. So what do I have and what have I done…
I have an amazing family. I am blessed with parents who have been married for over 40 years. They continue to support me and love me. I have taken the love and the life they gave me and poured it into my own family. I will celebrate my 10th Anniversary this August with my best friend. We have two beautiful little boys, who are us. And for this we laugh constantly. I have a wonderful big brother and a blessed younger sister. And I love them dearly. I have a huge extended family that I love to spend time with (and some people I’m related to).
I have an amazing education and the desire of a life-long learner. I was blessed with mentors in my life to point me in the right direction. As a result, I have a BA in Religion from a small Methodist liberal arts school and an MTS in Scripture and Interpretation from Harvard. I constantly seek knowledge and value conversations with people of information. I read, I observe, I reflect, and I write. I have hopes of one day earning a doctorate.
I have amazing friends, the kind who throw you surprise Birthday parties and the kind who, even though you haven’t seen them in years, call out of the blue to chat and tell you you are loved.
I have an amazing job on the campus of a boarding school. I have never felt so loved and supported for who I am, even with all my faults, as I have here. It is an amazing school and an amazing experience. My co-workers and the students are my family too. And I love it and them!
I have freedom to be me–to be irreverent, to garden, to read, to exercise or to be lazy, to wear make-up and look pretty or to be make-up-less-wet-pony-tailed-honest me, to play with my kids, to watch movies and play MW3 with my husband, and to write.
And, I have a faith that sustains me through the good and the bad. I have fellow journeyers who inspire me, challenge me, and support me. I have God on my side, even if I’m not on His all the time. And I have a God who comes after his little lost lamb when my actions require it!
I, my dear friends, loving family, and fellow bloggers, am blessed! I have had an amazing 32 years.
And now what of this Jesus year?
- Read the entire Bible. Not just the narrative parts. Not just the “big” stories. Not just the parts I like. But all of it. Even the boring genealogies (after all, as an OT professor told our class once, “It’s just evidence of a bunch of sex.”) Even the confusing prophets. Even the often-misinterpreted Revelation. All Of It! (I’m happy to report that I have started a plan on my iPhone and am over 5% of the way there…it’s going to be a long year…
- Finish one of the many Bible studies I have started. I’m thinking of the outreach study. It’s a Bible study that requires the participants to do mission work in their community. An action study if you will.
- Copyright something, maybe a Bible study. I’m not sure how to do it, but I want to and have a few descent short stories and one that I think it pretty darn good. And I’m always writing the next great American novel in my head and some of it finds its way to paper.
- Become an Certified Lay Speaker in the United Methodist Church. Classes are in September, so I’m gearing up. Once I complete this course, I will be able to preach in any UMC pulpit, including my uncle’s in MD…how sweet! (Here’s my first sermon as a local church lay speaker.)
- Fit comfortably into all my clothes again. Still hanging on to about 10 pounds of pregnancy ick. Did I mention my “baby” will be 2 this August? Yeah, I know…but I love sweets so much!!!
- Decorate our house, so that it feels like our family. We live in a house on campus that is provided for us as part of my husband’s job. All the walls are an irksome yellowy-beige, except the boys. We painted theirs when I was pregnant with Little Monkey, in that powerful 31st year. (No worries, it was actually my husband and sister who did the painting. I did all the taping prior.) I have started the plans in my head. We will begin taking action soon. Pictures to follow…
- Ah yes, the divine number, I believe I will stop my Jesus year goals here…sleep in again…nope, that will have to wait for several more years. To be honest I can’t think of another worthy goal to make the list…so I’ll leave this one open for divine inspiration. That could be dangerous, but I’ll go with it!