When Claire and I talked about my 50th Birthday blog post we thought it would be great to discuss the ‘50 things I have learned in 50 years’. It didn’t take me long to determine that there were definitely 50 things I learned……….the problem was with my age now I can’t remember them all. So I am taking a bit of a different direction and composing a letter to my 50 year old self.
Oh the places you will go………….or not! As a child you dreamed of all the places you’d go and imagined life as you clung to Dr. Seuss’ words of the endless possibilities there were for you out in the big, big world. You loved, you lost and you experienced pain. Choices were made and life happened in all the right ways. You went from an insecure teenager that hated more about herself than she loved to be a semi-confident mother, friend, wife and professional. Along the way you figured out that what other people thought about your looks, choices, attitudes and behaviors did not matter. You faced trials, the madness of motherhood, financial struggles, and exhaustion from juggling three kids, two jobs, a husband and a home with the best intentions. You learned to not beat yourself up over failed parenting skills, poor time management and lack of quality time to spend with your spouse, family and friends. You have been a good person. You have done all the right things within your capability. You made decisions for your children and family based on the knowledge and experience you had in life. You have developed amazing friendships and been there for your friends.
Was life perfect? No. Was life easy? No. Did you make mistakes? Yes. Did you fail people and situations at times? Yes. Do you have regrets? Yes. This is life. Life is short. In an instant it all can be changed or taken away from you. Do not let decisions, circumstances and actions of the past determine how you live today and tomorrow. For tomorrow is another day to use what you have learned in these very short 50 years to make better decisions and act in more positive ways. There is no perfect life. There is no perfect wife. There is no perfect mother. There is no perfect child. There is no perfect friend. There is no perfect situation.
When you find yourself in a place at 50 years old that you never thought you would be remember that you can’t control others actions and behaviors. But you can hold your head up, move on with dignity and know that you did your very best the last 50 years! That’s all that matters! Take a moment every day to reflect on life’s lessons and enjoy every single minute that you have left. It will go by even faster than you imagine. Slow down, breathe deep, enjoy life, love your children and continue to be yourself and appreciate who God made you to be! When you look at the successes of your children know that the job you did as a mother was well done. Will your kids point out all the mistakes you made? Yes! But know that those mistakes, those moments when you were not your best helped shape those children into the amazing young adults that they are today; loving, caring and giving. What more could a woman ask for? Well, that’s a blog post for another day!! Happy 50th Birthday Karla……….you’ve earned every fine line and gray hair! Continue to make it all worth it!
With Gratitude for each day I am given,
Photos Courtesy of Kaitlyn Johnson