Dear 39 year old self,
As I sit here to write this letter I am not sure what I should say about this year. My original purpose for these letters was to have a glimpse back in time to remember where I was at and maybe what I learned. Ideally, these stories would all be rainbows and sunshine, but this past year has been a very difficult one It has been filled with heartache and uncertainty, some of which I am still going through. I do not want to exploit the stories of those I love so I will try to tell MY story...what I struggled with, what I learned or am learning or still need to learn and how I felt about this year.
Summer was it's usual wonderful time with family and friends - boating, BBQ'ing, All Stars, Water Polo tournaments, camping, etc. I love summer, I love the warmth, I love the late evenings on the patio, I love spending time with my family, I love spending lots of time outside and summer did not disappoint!
My kids began a new school year, this time all three at different schools. Live-In #1 began her second year of high school, Live-In #2 began his first year of middle school and Live-In #3 began his last year in elementary school. I love watching my kids experience new things and to hear their perspective on the experience...most of the time I love it - sometimes I get frustrated with the views the schools take and then teach my kids, but these things are usually minor.
Life became very scary and uncertain in December when the love of my life became ill. The next few months were filled with many tears, fear what the future would hold and trying not to imagine the worst. During this time, however, something very beautiful happened, the love that my husband has for me became much more apparent. I got to see inside of this man who has a hard time opening up. His heart is far more beautiful than I had ever imagined. I got to feel so deeply of my own love for him. He is mine and I am his, I always knew this but the reality of it was felt to my core. Whatever life brings us to we have each other and that is what is most important.
Being a parent of a teenager has new meaning this year. I have struggled with decisions that need to be made, worried if I'm making the right or wrong decisions. I want so badly to be a good mother to all my kids. I am working hard to come to terms with the fact that I don't have all the answers...sometimes I will make mistakes and sometimes I will get it right, but whatever I do I am trying to be confident in knowing that I love my kids so very much and I am doing my best. Which brings me around to thoughts of my own teenage years. While raising my teenager I have come to the realization that my perception of my own teenage years has remained in the eyes of my teenage self. Now being the parent of a teenager I see everything very different. While my parents were not perfect, neither was I and I needed to forgive both myself and them for what happened so long ago. They too were trying to do their best by me. I called my mom and apologized for the heartache I had put them through. And I finally forgave them for what I felt they had done wrong. I wish it didn't take me that long to come to this realization.
Looking ahead, I fear the next year will continue to be a year of growing pains. I hope I can be patient with myself. As a mother, I hope I will have wisdom when making decisions. I hope my children will know I love them with every fiber of my being. I will hold tight to Lovers hand and hope the storms that life give us will begin to calm.
So 40, here you are, I'm not afraid of you. You just are. I am still me and I like me.