A year ago today I ran a marathon. And even though the past year hasn't gone as expected, I'm right where I'm supposed to be. This may not always be apparent, but I try to remind myself that it is the truth.
Monday, December 02, 2013
Tuesday, October 01, 2013
Do you allow yourself to dream? I mean really dream? Huge, almost unimaginable wishes for yourself? It wasn't until recently that I realized that I wasn't. I was never truly allowing myself to dream big. I always kept my dreams small, realistic, and what I believed to be "doable." My dreams were "safe." They were things I could easily achieve often with little fear standing in my way.
But doing that was setting limits for myself. I was basically deciding what was and wasn't possible before even trying. And if I've learned anything these past couple years, it's that anything is possible. Going from non-athlete to marathon runner really helped me see this. Dreams can be huge, wild, crazy, scary, etc... And really, shouldn't they be? It's those wild, unimaginable dreams that really help you appreciate who it is that you are. They give you purpose. Something to reach for.
When you limit your dreams, you're holding yourself back. You're essentially censoring your heart's purest wishes. And how can you follow your heart if you never give it the chance to speak? How can you go after your dreams if you never let yourself dream them? How can you become the person you're meant to be?
That's where I am right now, as scary as it is to admit. I've overcome a certain amount of fear and started dreaming big. I'm finally allowing myself to dream my "wild and crazy" dreams. I'm listening to my heart's wishes. But these dreams stir up a new fear when I think about chasing them. The fear of pursuing them. Never ending lists of "what ifs." "What if I can't?" "What if it's too hard?" "What if I fail?" etc.. But that's really another topic I'll save for another day. Today I'll stop with the message "Dare to Dream Big."
Wednesday, August 28, 2013
This past week, I finally tackled a project I've been neglecting for years--getting a handle on the girls' school work. Bag after bag, box after box had been piling up as I struggled to find the best method to treasure all the artwork and school papers that the girls constantly produce. I had considered countless methods, including scanning or photographing each piece, but every idea seemed overwhelming because I had waited so long (my oldest just started 4th grade). I had a mountain to tackle.
Then early this summer, a neighbor mentioned a schoolwork portfolio she had purchased for her 1st grade twins that helped her quickly file away the twins kindergarten papers. The ease and simplicity of the portfolio excited me, so I immediately ran to the store to buy two of my own. But then the empty portfolios sat all summer. The purchase price hadn't included the time necessary to sift through the mountains of paper. Or instructions on how to cram the mountains into a folder.
But this past week, with the girls starting a new school year, the time seemed right. I was going to dive into this long, neglected project. I collected boxes of school work from the garage and closets, and I spent the day sorting through the piles. I thumbed through old stories and artwork. Stumbled across cherished certificates and photos. I kept a good representation of work from each year and threw away/recycled the rest. I had first worried about the emotions that could come from throwing their artwork away (because I had been keeping just about everything), but I actually navigated the emotional minefield quite peacefully.
I reminded myself of several things. I was doing this for our family. When any of us feel like taking a walk down memory lane, a smallish, fairly organized portfolio will be better enjoyed than a room full of disheveled boxes (at this rate, a room was going to be necessary soon). When they grow up and want to look back, they're not going to want stacks of boxes to go through. But more importantly I reminded myself that the art work and the school work is often more about the process and not the final product (much like life being a journey, not a destination). A lot of these projects had served their purpose as the girls grew, explored, and created. The girls had learned their lessons and it wasn't necessary to hang onto every piece created. In the end, I probably still kept more than necessary, but it was a liberating start. The girls' portfolios are bursting with memories, our garbage can/recycle bin is full, and I'm one step closer to the clutter-free life I yearn for.