I am young. I am free. This last year was not without tears, nor lacking in sorrow. At times it was lonely. But mostly, looking back, what I see is wonder. Wonder at how it's possible that so much joy and happiness can fill one person's tiny life and heart.
No year passes without valleys. Of that, this thirtyoneyearer is sure. Sometimes my bones crack or lines emerge where skin used to be supple and full of youth. And in those moments, I can begin to feel old. Birthing and mothering a babe does that to a woman, I guess. (Heck...LIFE does that to us, doesn't it!?!)
But, when I look at the lives of my grandparents, when I ponder their legacies and immensely filled lives...I instantly feel young again. I am reminded of how much potential life has to offer. I am reminded of how much I have to give back in the little life of mine - to my children, to the love of my life, to our families and to friends who have become family, to neighbors and to strangers.
I am so blessed. I can't say or think about this enough. Our hearts too often gravitate toward the self, and I believe that's when we forget. And forgetting leaves us critical and complaining, and always pining for more. But gratitude, well that's full of happiness, joy and a peaceful contentment that I so long to hold onto each morning as I say hello to the sun.
I hope and pray that our children will lead lives that are wild and free in the ways that our Maker intended. I dream that they'll, too, be dreamers; that they'll be passionate and driven like their great grandmother and mama; that they'll be gentle, full of laughter and compassionate as their grandmothers, faithful, patient and risk takers when it counts as their grandfather; sensitive to others, filled with joy and pure-hearted as their papa. And I pray that I will one day look back on the days ahead without regret and filled only with love and wonder and heart brimming with gratitude.