Tuesday, February 12, 2013

thoughts during my last week of 25.

so my 26th birthday is in one week. 

weirdly enough, my birthday countdown started yesterday (at 8 days). this is quite the change from 10 years ago when i started my countdown to 16 at close to 300 days 
((i had a homemade tear-off countdown on my wall and everything))

im a girl who LOVES her birthday. february is always the *perfect* month, and all my fellow february birthdays say, "AMEN!" But this year feels different... i'm thinking that this may because i'm not counting down to be 16 anymore. i'm counting down for 26. 


what did i think my life was going to look like at 26 when i was 16? i guarantee you that i'd have said i would have about 3 kids by now... a successful career, beautiful family with a wonderful husband and a huge house with a big yard all with a gorgeous dog or two. i think i also would have thought that 26 would feel differently, too.... like i was more of an adult and less like a kid.

i can't fully speak for 26 yet - I'll let you know in a week. But for my last week of being 25, life feels a lot different than I thought it would... mainly because there are still so many times when i feel so much like a child. i've looked at ryan before and said, "can you really imagine the fact that we are MARRIED and live on our own in this house!? we get to do whatever we want! we're considered 'grown-ups' to little kids!!!"

it blows my mind.

because in all reality, i feel like im still 16 a lot of the time. 
i still feel unsure about myself and my decisions... except for the added pressure that it's not just me and my future in my decisions now. 
i still feel like i want people to like me and i want to make everyone happy. 
i still have doubts and insecurities about myself and my life. 
i still look at other people and think that maybe their life would be better to have than my own. 
i still so desperately want to be perfect.
i still feel the pressure to go above and beyond expectations for myself from others.
i still feel like im not enough at times. 
and there are times when i still feel like maybe when i get a little older that things will get better.

but there's something different about 25 year old carrie anne and 16 year old carrie anne.

i'm slowly starting to learn that the "Pinterest-perfect life" doesn't have to be mine, and it probably shouldn't be. my comparisons to other people's lives are like poison that only bring me down and do nothing to enhance myself personally. i'm learning that i'm already accepted and loved and don't have to have everybody else's approval. i'm learning that age doesn't necessarily bring wisdom or maturity, and "being an grown up" is tough stuff. i'm learning that humility is my best asset and tool, and knowing that i don't know (and will never know) everything is better than pretending to. 

what i know now that i maybe didn't know at 16 was that God loves me so much. when i was 16, i was self-obsessed with my appearance and being liked by other people and by "finding out who i was." i made dumb choices based on that mindset, and i can honestly say now that now that old mindset only comes in glimpses; however, those glimpses remind me of my "old self" that i wish so badly would go away. 

i think it's the glimpses of my old self that allow me to have empathy for others (as well as myself)... and to let me know that i'll never always have it together.  
that's hard to accept for a perfectionist... and as an almost 26 year old :)

so here's my resolve. 

ive learned that i can either accept the truth or run from it and have it find me later. 
the truth is: 26 scares the crap out of me. 
it sounds like an age where i should have it all together and tied up in a pretty bow. 

i'm going to let it scare me.... for now.
but i don't think it will for long.

 i'm reminded of scene from one of my favorite movies, Man on Fire.
Denzel is training Dakota Fanning for a swim meet, and she's too slow off the block. You can watch and see the video below and how this might relate to my upcoming milestone of 26.

 i'm considering 26 my gunshot.

 i'm in training now.

im thankful.
carrie anne


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