I’ve had some ups and downs with my parents. Sometimes I don’t understand them and sometimes they don’t understand me. However, today it finally clicked with me that they show their love to me in the way they know how.
The way they learned. The way they were loved. The way they wanted to be loved. And even though it’s different from how I wish they would show their love, the fact is that they love me very very much.
This was a huge revelation for me (shouldn’t be shocking, but it was).
I decided I wanted to do something to show my love and appreciation for them. I thought about getting them an expensive gift (often touted as a great way to show love), but then I remembered that it’s their 40th anniversary this year and each year when their anniversary rolls around they’ve hinted that they’d love for their kids to throw them a big party.
Over the last few months I’ve done a fair bit of soul-searching to figure out what I want to do with my life.
I know I want to do work that focuses on helping others. I know it’s important to prioritize my role as Mother above all else. I know I like building other people’s confidence.
Bit by bit I’ve listened more to my heart and taken baby steps to move myself in that direction. And yesterday it was like a culmination of three affirmations, encouraging me to continue moving along.
A great deal of change has happened over the last several years and I’ve grappled a lot with my roles as a mother, wife, daughter, employee and woman.
With two daughters (3 years old and 4 months) I’ve often contemplated “Should I go back to work?” “Should I work part-time or full-time?” “What job should I return to?” “What if I fail at it?” “What if I stay at home, later decide I want to go back and there are no jobs?” “What if I go into a new job and need to work long hours and my family suffers?”
I’ve heard of the term “death by a thousand cuts”, I tend to execute a “death by a thousand ‘what if’s’”.
Confidence – full trust; belief in the powers, trustworthiness, or reliability of a person or thing
I used to think I had confidence. I would read articles and books on how to exude confidence. Straight posture, projecting your voice, emphatic hand gestures. These were the things I read about and dutifully did thinking “Hey look! I know what I’m talking about!”.
It wasn’t until recently that someone told me I came off meek. I came off as unsure and someone looking to others for permission. This was surprising and incredibly hard to hear when I’d worked so hard to not look that way. After some self-reflection I learned that actions/wording that I thought were polite or respectful actually came off as timid and apologetic. I think part of this “mislearning” came from my culture and childhood.
Recently I saw a posting for a position in our church and felt an inward nudge to check it out. I casually asked the person sitting next to me what the position entailed and was “kindly” informed that the people who usually filled the position would be seen as leaders of the church, were older & typically well known in the church and had a stronger Christian background than what I had.
Needless to say, it was a little disheartening to hear that what I thought may be a calling and potentially fulfilling work was actually above me and where I was on my faith journey.
The closet was the first thing to tackle…
Over the past year I’ve slowly reached into every closet and crevice of the house. Konmari-ing the crap out of it (literally).
Here’s a few things I learned along the way – both about decluttering and myself: