Another birthday is here. Being 35 was really a year where I felt my age. For most of my adult life I have felt like a 16 year old on the inside just faking it until I make it. I can remember each time we left the hospital with one of the newborns thinking, "Really, you think I am old enough to take this precious baby home without taking a class, having a book, or passing a test?!" As I have aged I have slowly grown into my skin and become more confidant in being Katie and not who I thought other people would want me to be and learning you can't make everyone happy. At 35 I also started to feel and see the physical side effects of age. No longer can I eat what I want to stay the size I want to stay. Where did all those wrinkles come from anyway?! And wow do my boobs sag. Living in a city where plastic surgery is considered normal maintenance like an oil change for your car can really alter your self image. At various moments I considered Botox, Boobs or a baby to recapture my youth. Not to say that any of them are completely off the table but they are not the answer this year. (I think Max just fell off the chair reading this. LOL)
For a writing assignment in 6th grade we had to write our obituary. Our teacher asked us to write what we would want to have accomplished and be remembered by. Would we be defined by our career, a religious mission or family? I have periodically thought about this assignment and have decided if I could only have 5 words to be remembered by, what would they be. Would those 5 words change the way I live today? I have picked 5 words that I hope define me as age defines a fine wine. :)
If I could only have one word it would be love. I love fiercely and I hope all those near me will feel my love. When Jesus was asked what the greatest commandment in the Law was, the answer was love.
"Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and all you mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: Love your neighbor as yourself."
~ Matthew 22:36-40
I hope my actions will reflect my love for God, my family, and those in my community.
I want to be generous with the blessings I have been given. Generous with love, time, and money. If there is a need I hope to fill it. It truly is better to give than receive.
Family is everything to me. Many people are defined by their accomplishments or careers. My whole world is my family. Being alone in the desert as a little unit has only sharpened my connection to them and made me realize the importance of maintaining strong extended family bonds. Friends are good and can become like family but the genetic and spiritual bonds of family are special and worthy of investing time and energy in to strengthen them.
I am a happy person and I want to bring joy to those around me. Most immediately to Max and the kids. But I hope in small ways to bring joy to those around me with a smile, a hug, a helping hand, dinner, or in my endless errors that are always good for a laugh.
I have a heart to serve others. At this point in my life I am giving myself fully to serving my family and doing all I can to put them first. As the kids grow they will need less of me and I hope to serve others. What good is a life lived if at the end of it, it was just for yourself?
The sole meaning of life is to serve humanity.
~ Leo Tolstoy