Looking back in retrospect and longing for the past are two different things. Looking back at where you use to be is absolutely okay. The reason we feel so grateful for how far we’ve come is because we easily remember the past. It’s when we start longing for what use to be, we find ourselves in discontent and sorrow unable to appreciate the present moment.
I could write a book on things I’ve longed for that use to be or that I want to be but every time I do, I feel sad and empty. Here’s an example; before I remarried life was so so simple. I had an easy routine that was rarely interrupted. My days were just how I wanted them to be. Waking up early to hit the 0530 hot yoga class or spending those early, quiet, dark mornings sipping on coffee, reading my bible and journaling my prayers. My days were filled with work, then the evenings spent with my oldest daughter. I may’ve even gotten a second workout in, WHY? Because I could! I only had to worry about my daughter and myself.
With the luxury of controlling every aspect of my life also came heavy burdens. I paid the bills and earned the money to do so, grocery shopped, cleaned the house, did the laundry, drove and attended Madison’s practice’s, took her to medical and dental appointments, made the appointments, made time to exercise and meal prep, read my bible, prayed, and of course worked. These are to name a few of my responsibilities as a working mother. Many of these years, I attended college in the evenings and weekends just so I could always have a means to provide for my girl after I retired from the military. This list may seem small to some but I’m exhausted just writing it. How did I do this? Seriously, my only answer is God.
But secretly I longed for help but was it possible to give myself to someone again, to trust someone again, and could anyone even live up to my unrealistic expectations?
God delivered! I pushed, resisted, and fought with all my might but thank God this man stood firm in his pursuit for me. The only person on earth that has loved me the way Jesus loved the church. God also gave us a baby girl who is a miracle and I’ll talk more about in the future.
However, with this came an upheaval of my life. I lost my space, my control, my privacy, my body I worked so hard on, and it seemed my freedom too. I’m quite sure I dealt with postpartum depression for at least a year and a half. I felt all my flesh dying in everyway. I didn’t want to yield to his ideas, his ways, his furniture, or his baggage. I didn’t want to compromise on what I bought, how I managed my time, and now even though I was grateful, this little baby inside of me was sure to change everything…. and she did. She is almost 3 now and just this year I stopped fighting my own voided desires, longing for the past making a choice to embrace what my life looked like now. . One day I decided to make a deliberate effort in changing my sorrow to joy. I bought a video study by Kay Warren, “Choose Joy Because Happiness Isn’t Enough.” It helped!
Please don’t think that I’m not SO thankful or that one-minute goes by that I don’t look at my Sweet Ivy and wonder why I am so blessed.
Gurrlll, he’s a lie…
A good friend of mine once told me that Satan wants me to believe I can do it all by myself. I did it before, why couldn’t I do it again? He fed me lies that my previous life was much better and I could never find happiness in what I have now. What a liar he is! The apostle John tells us in chapter 10:10 that the thief comes to kill, steal, and destroy but Jesus comes so that we may have life and live it to the full. God gave me new life, literally 9 pounds and 3 ounces of it. A partner who one day I know will share ministry with me, and a helper. He gave me relief and someone I could rely on. I get to share some of my chores and we get to create something new together. It has taken WORK. It has taken SACRIFICE! But I never long for my old life anymore. I want to grow old with this man and all his flaws. Most importantly, we get to raise my sweet Ivy together in a home the way God designed.
Sometimes we have to empty our cup to make room for a refill. What we think we want or deserve can be very different than what God want’s for us. There’s a lot of faith and trust that must be practiced before seeing the beauty of it all. I pray that if you are going through something new or maybe lost something old that you believe, without a doubt, it is so God can usher something new into your life.