I turned another year older this week. birthdays never really seem to affect me too much -- I feel loved on by the wonderful people in my life for 24 hours, and then it's back to life as we know it. but because I feel like I've been struggling and growing and learning this year, I thought I would reflect a little and capture those thoughts.
I've learned that change is constant. that no matter how much I wish I could keep things the same forever, they will always be changing. and I can't control it, so I should learn to embrace it. and take the journey with God. who else better to be traveling with?
I've learned all experiences are different. moving to Alabama and moving to Columbus were completely different journeys. see above. different is different. it's not bad vs. good.
I've learned you have to ask for what you want and communicate what you need. people won't read your mind. even if you think it's obvious, it's probably not. be bold. be honest. be brave.
I've also learned you have to say no. have to set boundaries. I've been learning this awhile now, but it keeps coming up in new ways and new situations. you teach people how to treat you.
I've learned you can only control how you react/act in a situation. I can't control others, and I also shouldn't let their actions/reactions affect me.
I've learned that people won't always give you the same courtesy and respect you give them. this doesn't mean you shouldn't give it anyway.
I've learned how to be more honest and open and put it all out there. because...why not? you have nothing to lose and everything to gain. and I've learned you won't always get the response you want. in fact, the response might lay you flat. or you might get no response at all. this is the most heartbreaking. but you will walk away knowing you said what you needed to, did what you could, and have no regrets about the situation on your end. this will help you heal.
I've learned your closest friends don't always live in the same city. that transitions can be painful and lonely and leave empty spaces. I think this is normal. how you choose to fill those empty spaces is what's important.
I am by no means an expert and am still learning the above lessons. if you have any wisdom, shoot it my way. here's to another year of learning.