April 25, 2017

I wrote this over a month ago, but never posted it. I've read it a few times since writing it, and every time I think, "this is a good reminder." I seriously need to be reminded of it constantly!

. . . . .

I've been thinking about phases lately. For the past.. while.. I've struggled with some things that might seem so silly. Maybe I'm not struggling so much as really letting these things bother me. 

It has been bothering me how late Stefan and I sleep in every morning. Our days begin really slowly - one of us gets up with Peter while the other one exercises. We seriously let Peter wake us up almost every day. Our day doesn't really begin - we've eaten, showered, we're ready to go - until about nine-thirty. I am not kidding you! And actually I usually don't even get ready until Peter goes down for a nap so by nine-thirty I probably mean ten. So, we're slow movers in the morning. And I've caught myself thinking so many times, "This is ridiculous. Everyone else in the world is starting their day so much earlier! I'm sure they get more done, have more energy, and are all around better people than we are!"

But the past few days I've been thinking about it a different way. And don't get me wrong, I guarantee we would still benefit from getting ourselves into gear a bit more quickly every morning. But lately I've been thinking how this is most likely just a brief phase of life for us. Stefan gets to work from home right now, we only have one baby, our baby is my only real job. But someday Stefan may have to wake up early to make it to an office for work, we'll have more kids and they'll need to get to school, I might have another job. So I feel like right now I should try to enjoy these things that might be gone someday - the slow mornings, the few demands on my schedule, the extra time to see Stefan during the day.

I've been thinking about phases in another kind of way, too. Sometimes I think about experiences in my life that had a huge impact on me but only last a brief amount of time, and I almost feel silly that they mean so much. As if the only things allowed to change your life have to last at least a year or two. 

I worked at Disney World for less than four months. I have friends who started the same day I did and never left - four years later they still get to be in the happiest place on earth every day. So I know they know more about the parks and the job and all things Disney than I do. But those four months taught me so much about myself and what I can do and hard work and fun work and not fun work and working with others, others who sometimes are really really really different from you. When I go back to visit Disney World, it feels like coming home. And I used to think that was so dumb. But I don't anymore. I'm letting myself value that big, but brief experience - as more time passes, it seems to mean even more to me. That comes up in life a lot, I think - the little or short or trivial things end up meaning the most.

I feel the same way about our time in Chicago - we only lived there ten months. Sometimes I'm embarrassed to tell people that - like it's so lame we didn't even last a year. But in those ten months, we found out my mom had breast cancer and got to be close while she went through her surgeries and recovery. We had a baby, and we figured out how to live in a whole new environment. We made really great friends and we kept learning about ourselves and each other and what we can do independently and what we can do together and how in the world to take care of a baby did I mention we had a baby? So, yeah, Chicago means a lot to me. Maybe I wasn't born and raised there, but maybe that doesn't matter.

One of the hardest things for me to do is not wish I was in a different place - a different phase. I'm always looking back or looking ahead. Sometimes that's fine and necessary and healthy, but it's also really good and important for me to learn to look at where I am right now. And not worry about proving anything about it to anyone else. Just see the good in it, and enjoy it for what it is. Because it's probably only a phase.

Peter regularly smashing strawberries into the carpet.. just a phase, right?

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