Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Enjoy The Journey

Awkward phases follow us through life, do they not? I'm sure they begin at birth, but we're just unaware of their presence and the subsequent impact on our lives until we reach an older age. However as we hit puberty, we become painfully aware of the effects of these bodily changes as we welcome the pre-adolescent years. It starts off with a bang as our arms and legs temporarily take control of our bodies and grow at abnormal rates leaving us with freakishly long limbs and a teeny, tiny torso. This change in physique brings with it a slue of other complications including a spell of clumsiness that plagues our verbal skills as well as our motor skills.

Of course by the time we reach high school, we emerge from the cocoon a beautiful creature. Our limbs are finally proportionate to our bodies, our braces have been removed, our hair shampooed, our wardrobes updated and our personalities bubbling...or so we think. This is the onset of awkward phase two. This time around it's in the social realm and perhaps more painful than the first as we search for our place in the jungle they call school. It's and endless process of trail and error that I won't go into because you all know what I'm talking about. In the end, one of two things happen. Either we find our place among the crowds or we don't. It has been my experience that those who find their niche in those teens years don't seem to move forward with life well, it's as if they are holding on to a piece of the past. For those of us who never find that piece of perfection in high school, we move on...typically to college.

This is the phase in life I think is the least awkward. For the first time we all seem to find our place in this world, and I think that is God's way of easing the stress of those four plus years. Some of us find our place in academics, some in physical conditioning, some in the Greek world, some in the religious organizations. But we all find it, and there we thrive. We have friends with similar interests, diverse backgrounds, a common outlook on the future and for the first time, we are all moving through life at the same speed...until graduation.

The awkward phases following the college years include the young professional phase where some of our friends are married, some are still in school and the ones who are in a similar situation as we are have relocated, leaving us back at square one. Then, we finally get married only to find more awkwardness in balancing our social life with our marriage and our single friends with our married ones.

Yes, life is full of awkward moments, but I always assumed that when I became a mommy they would somehow vanish...not the case. In fact children only add to the social delema as we now have to make new friends who don't mind going out to eat with a couple and their screaming seven month old. Then there is the battle of "Am I Too Old?" This is all physiological but I find myself asking my self, "am I too old to do that," or "should I do that since I'm a mom now?" The beauty of this phase is that I no longer care if it's awkward, in fact I embrace it.

I find joy in fact that my son doesn't try to disguise his poop face even when we are eating at nice restaurants, and I love the fact that we can't leave home without at least one noisy toy which inevitably gets thrown down during prayer time at church, and I have even come to laugh at my self when I leave the house with spit up on my shirt. I think for so long I held on to this idea of glamor being restored to my life at some point...but that's not going to happen. (although in hind sight it never existed!)

My life is forever changed for the better. I have traded my high heels for flats (most of the time) my daily jogs for walks in the park, my weekly spa day for a weekly nap, and my designer clothes for sweatshirts with baby food stains. And you know what? I love it!! I wouldn't trade a single second of motherhood for a lifetime of skinny jeans and manicures!!

Yes, awkward phases follow us through life but I have learned to embrace each one and to enjoy the journey!

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