Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Great Expectations

Boy, did I create that 30 before 30 list!?! And haven't looked at it since.

Well, wait...that's a lie. If it had to do with expanding my waistline rather than expanding my mind, then I probably did it. Breakfast King, ate there. Checkety check!
So here I am, coming to you on the other side of 30, not feeling any more accomplished, as my list became completely irrelevant. But I have realized how much I miss the cathartic exercise of self-indulgence. Oh, blogging. It has been quite awhile and I could go over all the things that have happened in the past 8 months...blah blah blah. But instead, let's dwell in the present.

I turned 30 yesterday. 11-12-12...next year, it was pointed out to me, it will be 31 on 11-12-13. Whaaa? Blows your mind, eh?? Eh?? Anywayyyy...

Picture this: Torn up linoleum under the $25 plastic park bench they had on end-of-season clearance at the local BIG Lots in the waiting area of my fav "quick-service" Mexican restaurant. Monday Night Football cheerleaders cheering on my two-year old from the 63 and a 1/2 inch PLasMa set atop the Pepsi case, as he desperately shakes the quarter junk dispensers hoping to score a FREE plastic monkey (wearing some killer Blue Blockers). Me, awaiting our cheesy enchiladas, just hoping that they arrive in their yummy styrofoam before the other patrons accuse my son of having "the croup" on account of his sporadic hacking.

"Celebration!?!" you say. Oh yes indeedy. This was the scene of my 30th birthday celebration...and it was PER-FECT.

Now, had you asked me five years ago how I saw the night of my 30th birthday, recounting this scene is probably not where I would have gone. My expectations may have been a little bit higher. In fact, they were probably sky high. Unattainable. Yet, a very wise friend of mine once said that the downfall of men is their ability to objectify, and the downfall of women is our ability to set unattainable expectations. It is so true...

I have been accused, by no shortage of my loved ones, of having impossible expectations. I used to believe that these expectations were not "unrealistic" and that all those who accused them of being so were just, uh, lame. Yet, I have come to see that the problem lies with the expector...me. Aaaand not so much with those around me who continually ask, "What do you mean you want Indian-raised Kobe beef sliders to feed the snow leopards at your Geisha-themed luau?" The Lord has confirmed this assertion, continually placing circumstances in my life to prune me of my so-called needs, shedding light on their true form: wants.

Enter my screaming and sickly three-month-old on the night of our family birthday celebration who barely allowed me to eat my cake OR my begging to be the go-getter of the makeshift Mexicana feast just to get out of the house on my actual birthday as my sick kiddos were driving Miss Kristen Krazy. Did I envision cakes and Kristen effigies, ponies and live Jazz? Sure. But whining with a side of snot was what I got...and turns out, was just what I needed. 

As I sat in my bed, staring blankly at the wall on my first night of my third decade, I was happy. There was no parade, no elephants or mai-tais. Just my incredible husband and ever-teammate, right there next to me with every huge sneeze- tending to even the slightest of whimpers. The man who when the going got really tough, broke out the lilies and the singing card (courtesy of the two-year-old). And my two amazingly beautiful and perfect children who lay snoring (as they could only breath through their mouths) in their respective beds letting out the occasional cough letting us know they were still there--needing us. It was quiet, peaceful, and perfect. Yeah, I have it pretty good. And God knows that.

Birthdays, yesterdays, and every days are not about how much we can expect from them, but how much we can give of ourselves in them. It is about forming our hearts and our hearts were made to love...and to sacrifice. And sacrifice is not born out of want, but need.

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