Today is my 38th birthday and my five year old daughter asked me if I wished that I could shrink. After a deep breath and a few probing questions, I realized that she was taking about my age and not my body size. Whew!
I am known to joke about my age and the fact that I seem to remain 29 year after year. All joking aside, I don’t wish that I could “shrink” my age. I remember when I was in my early 20’s and an older, wiser woman told me that her late 30’s were the best years of her life. She said that she finally knew who she was as a person and that insight was golden. At the time, I nodded my head but the mere thought of turning 30 scared me to death. Now I understand what that woman meant and I feel the exact same way.
My fiance and I are currently taking a premarital class and the teacher said something that I truly believe. He said, “History is what happened to you. Baggage is what you feel about it.” I believe that this is such an important statement and it is one that I live by. One of my sister’s co-workers is on my personal Facebook page and she asked her, “Is your sister always that happy?!” The answer is an absolute “no”. While I have been accused of being a Pollyanna on occasion, I am human. I have stressful days and I am usually burning the candle at both ends.
While I do believe that I’ve always had a positive spirit and outlook on life, it takes work. One thing that I have learned is that you can’t change your feelings but you can change your thoughts. Thoughts create feelings. This child custody battle sucks (for lack of a better word) but I choose to look at the positive in each situation. Even when it feels bleak, there are positives. The one thing that I’ve mastered in my 30’s is putting an end to the negative self-talk in my head. That alone has made such a huge difference in my life. I am happy with who I am- inside and out.
I was driving in the car with my daughters about two weeks ago and we were talking about something that was very disappointing to the three of us. My oldest daughter (age 7) said to me, “Well, lets try to find the positives“. If I accomplish only one thing as a mother, that is the lesson that I want to teach my daughters. No matter where you are in life, you can make a decision to change your thinking. It is easy to get caught up in the victim mode and believe me, I’ve been there. It is easy to be a victim when you are divorcing a narcissist but incredibly empowering to say, “I was a victim but I refuse to spend another day in that role“. At 38, I can say that with confidence.
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