I’m sure everyone hits a point in their life where they realize that things didn’t work out quite like they thought they would. We will all, of course, have our share of ups and downs. I think the key is not to dwell on the low points and to celebrate the high points.
I turn 30 this week. I’m still processing how I feel about it. I don’t dread it, by any means. But it certainly has made me reflect on what I thought my life would like by the time I turned 30. As it turns out – my reality is nothing like what I envisioned! And I’m completely okay with that! Because as I have aged, (barf – I hate that word) my dreams for our future as a family have changed. But just for fun, I thought it would be fun to share some of the things that didn’t work out like I once had hoped.
Things I Thought I Would Do Before 30
1. Finish having a family.
It’s probably no surprise that as a teenager, I thought it seemed weird to wait until your 30’s to have kids. I completely planned to be finished by now. But I have learned that there is no rushing a family. And although I have no idea if we will someday be adding more to our brood (there are no immediate plans), I don’t think I will ever be “finished”. I always want to keep that door open for whatever surprises God wants to throw our way!
2. Own our dream home.
When I pictured my life at 30, I not only pictured the perfect little family. Oh no. I pictured the perfect little family living in the perfect little home. In reality, that’s a bit harder to manage. Especially when your idea of perfect keeps changing. But mostly, because my priorities have shifted. Our priority as a family is to live our lives for His glory, not to live the perfect, comfortable life.
3. Have a part-time career.
When I signed up for beauty school, I thought it was the perfect fit for me and my desires to be a stay at home mom. I figured I could work out of my own home once my kids were in school. It would help me make a little extra money and give me an opportunity to express my creativity, all while being close to my kids. But there were a couple things I didn’t know about myself back then. For one – I’m not a huge fan of working. I know, crazy right? But seriously. I turn into a ball of stress and I just don’t know how to “turn it off” at the end of the night. It’s a nightmare for my whole family. I also developed Carpal Tunnel, making a career in hair styling a bit of a challenge. So I’m still in this…what do I want to do (if anything) mode. My hubby works really hard so that I can continue to be home with the kids. I know that’s not even an option for everyone, and I am thankful every day (even the hard days) that God has allowed me the opportunity to stay home for the time being.
4. Have things figured out.
Did that make you laugh? Admittedly, it made me laugh. Of course when you plan your life, you think by the time you hit 30 you are going to have things “figured out”. Whatever that means. What type of exercise you enjoy most, how to do devotions every day, how to avoid fights with your husband, and how to send your kids peacefully off to school. Oh, and how to be on time. Yep – still all things I haven’t figured out. Maybe I’m a little slow. Or maybe, just maybe, this thing called “life” is a constant learning process.
So yeah, maybe I don’t have everything I thought I’d have. Maybe I haven’t done everything I thought I would do. But overall – I’m pretty darn happy about where I am. And even better – I’m excited about what’s coming up next! We have been in a season of change for quite some time now. God has been giving us glimpses of the excitement ahead and truthfully – I just can’t wait!
No really, this waiting thing is hard.
Well, thanks for reading friends. I know many of my readers out there either recently turned 30, or are about to. I’m curious if you found yourself in my shoes. What were you expecting to do by 30 that didn’t happen?
Photography by Mike Fiechtner