Wisdom and Laugh Lines: Why This Phase of Life Rocks!

30 something and loving it

We are about to embark upon a rather epic journey of converting our “everything space” in our basement, to a homeschool space where the kids can more easily spread out. Maybe you have an “everything space”. It’s the space in a home that occupies all the miscellaneous “stuffs” <—(yeah, I know that’s bad grammar, but “stuff” hardly felt like it covered the vast array of junk we have collected). Not sure if you a space like that, though I suspect we all have at least a “stuffs corner”. 

I was browsing Instagram accounts and Googling basement renos like a mad woman, you know, so I can later convince people I have some hidden gift of interior design (which I do not in case you’re curious, but let’s keep that between you and I). As I scrolled though pages on my phone I noticed two things, the first being that I needed to slow down the pace or else I was going to end up with a solid case of arthritis in my thumb. But, it was my second thought that surprised me the most. Image upon image of beautifully creative rooms with their curators all being young 20-something women revealing genuinely more skills and talent that I hold in my left pinkie. Not only that, but they look cute doing it! 

I mutter something out loud as I see a young lady with a perfectly poised “messy” ponytail, drill in her hand, ripped jeans (that I guarantee cost her more than my entire current jeans collection), and 5 sweet little coordinating children at her feet, presumably hers. 

“I do not look like that when I reno a room,” I snickered.

My daughter’s, having heard my snork, gathered around to see just what mom was looking at. They instantly start laughing, like way beyond my subtle snicker, which actually left me genuinely confused. I mean, I know I’m no beauty queen when I work, but was it really that bad?!

They began to reminisce between themselves of that time, earlier this summer, when I renovated our kitchen. 

“No, that’s not our mom at all!”

“Mom’s painting clothes are hilarious!”

Hold up. They are painting clothes children, what’s the problem?

“Well, let’s not forget your green crocs, “ says one.

“Or the pants that don’t do up!” squeals another, which instantly triggers tears of laughter rolling down their faces.

It’s true. They don’t. They are the last pair of jeans I bought pre-babies 15 years ago, hence why they are now work pants. Problem is, they genuinely don’t do up anymore, and it isn’t because the zipper is broken. Just an FYI, I bought them one month before I found out we were expecting and I felt it seemed a tad wasteful of hard earned money spent on my delightfully new Quicksilvers (best brand ever, am I right?!) to never wear them again. I vowed to make the most of them in whatever way I could, and I now feel like I have my money’s worth- almost.

Also, since we’re going for honesty here, I usually wear an old t-shirt that says “My mommy thinks I’m special”. My mom gave it to me as a gift many years ago, and oddly enough had the same tearful laughter my daughter’s were currently displaying when she gave it to me. I wore that shirt when my second was born, because…well…because it was already on when I went into labour and sorting out which pjs I wanted to wear while grunting out a child was fairly low priority. I still have it because it makes me smile when I see it, even though it now looks like I was in the spray zone while ax-murdering a can of paint. Too dark? Actually…just the right shade. Bad joke? I know. I didn’t dare tell them that I also have a pair of pink fuzzy socks that are a must when I adorn my painting duds, that’s because I’m all for encouraging them to learn, and they can sharpen their skills of observation to figure that one out on their own. You’re welcome, children.

All that to say this, I have come to one conclusion: I am in the early onset phase of “getting older”. 

Don’t laugh, I’ve just invented a new season of life. 

Granted, I can’t say for certain how long this phase lasts, as I’m only crossing into this new territory now. Perhaps a few decades, perhaps longer. All I know is this…

Something odd has been creeping in the last few years as I near my middle ages. It’s nothing overly intense, I mean, I need to pep-talk my uterus each month to convince her she needs to hang in there a little longer. Unlike my 20-something counterpart, the need to take photos from a higher vantage point is now a thing. Oh, and I get cranky when I overhear teenagers talk about how tired they are. “As if”… as my currently aging generation would say.

But, there are perks to being in this phase of life that no one tells you. For example, I can now enjoy embarrassing my children when I take them on a trip to the hardware store for more paint, just by wearing my painting pants (don’t worry, the “my mommy thinks I’m special” shirt is long enough to hide the fact that my top botton of my jeans is making no effort to find its way to the button hole several inches away.)

Clothing aside, there is one giant perk to this new season of late 30-something/ early 40-something season of life. If this last decade has taught me anything at all it is simply the wisdom to trust God’s gentle unfolding of life. There is a letting go of perfection in this season, and rather a treasuring of each passing moment for what it is. Whether it’s good or bad, our life experience, by this phase of life, has taught us that both possess equally valuable lessons. There has been a quiet confidence arising in this season as a result. It’s the confidence that stems from the wisdom to know that we all struggle in our days, no one is exempt, no one has figured out perfection. As if waking up for the first time, I realize this journey is one worth savouring rather than trying to race through. With God at the helm, we can loosen the grip and stop striving for the approval of man, but rather relish in the goodness of God’s providence as we ride on.

I know that that sweet young mama, God-bless her, has struggles like the rest of us. I know she likely had ketchup spattered children that she wiped down before the photo was taken. I know that these rooms of beauty only look so good because the paint is still fresh, the lightbulbs were just replaced, and the toys and clutter have been cleared just beyond the edge of the frame. It’s ok to share in the beautiful things of life, but this past season has taught me the broken and ragged both hold just as much beauty, and I have come to treasure both.

Sure, my body is doing weird things, but hey, at least it’s new and somewhat interesting. But my mind and mental sanity have settled into this season with enough wisdom to offer myself grace to leave behind perfection, and just enjoy the sweetness of these moments. Our eldest daughter, a teenager, is contemplating her future career path, our middle is becoming a most magnificent baker, and our youngest, our son, is so full of wonder I can’t help but to slow down and enjoy his curiosity with him. Such an extravagant season is wrapped up in the ordinary, I must say, I am finally seeing it.

So, me and my lime green crocs will enjoy the journey with the slow stability of this season, a season that appreciates the ability to just be without needing to fill it, without needing to prove you can accomplish greatness. This is a season where we put into action the lessons of triumph and failure from our past and sing praises for the magnificent depth of character we now see in our faithful Father.

Our job now is to simply trust the Driver, and enjoy the new-found wisdom of this phase of life. 

All My Love,

PS- Upon proofreading this post, my husband has kindly asked to buy me a new pair of painting pants. For the sake of our marriage, I'm going to take one for the team and let him win this one (but I'm keeping the Crocs- don't tell him I said that!).
Like Grandma Did

No comments:

Post a Comment

Thank you for your comment. It is currently awaiting moderation.

[name=Sarah Slanzi] [description=Old-fashioned homemaking steeped in God's grace] (facebook=https://www.facebook.com/hiddenmotherhood) (instagram=https://www.instagram.com/sarah.slanzi) (pinterest=https://www.pinterest.ca/hiddenmotherhood/)