Today I faced my fears. Today I chose me.
Two years ago I came home from my second semester of college with nothing on my mind except for the man of my dreams that I was about to marry. Without a second thought I traded my focused and driven educational plans for a pair of rose colored glasses and married life. Eventually the newness wore off and the tint in my glasses faded. I didn’t go back to school that fall, I got a crappy job while my husband went to school and worked too. A few months later we found ourselves flipped upside-down and we were both out of school and working way too much for far too little. I felt unfulfilled and even worse I felt afraid to admit it. I felt like confessing that I wanted more was selfish, like needing more meant that what I had wasn’t enough.
I continued like this for a really, REALLY long time. I returned home from work crying most of the time. I was depressed and anxious. I felt alone and I felt guilty for feeling that way. Owning how I was feeling and the real cause of why I felt that way seemed impossible. Not to mention totally ungrateful and rude. So I kept my mouth shut and my head down.
And then my husband decided to dream big.
I mean like REALLY big.
And I couldn’t have felt more supportive of him. I wanted his dream for him more than anything I had ever desired before. It was like I could see his potential unfolding and coming to life. It was beautiful, it was amazing, it was ELECTRIFYING. I was on FIRE for him!
And then somewhere deep down those anxious, lonely and depressed feelings emerged.
They were small at first, sure. I brushed them off as nerves, his goals lofty and would require me to be a strong partner. But then the feelings got bigger. And I started to really really freak out. And I kept looking for excuses to pawn my feelings off on, but deep down I knew what I felt.
I felt jealous.
Really freaking jealous.
There he was, with these huge lofty goals and all of the ambition in the world to achieve them. And then there was me, with a crappy job and no prospects for things to change anytime soon. I kept trying to justify my stagnation by thinking that we would probably be getting pregnant soon… but as per usual, things never seem to go quite according to plan for us.
I felt like he was taking off and I was experiencing failure to launch. I wanted what he had for me.
I eventually told my husband how I felt, and he couldn’t have been more loving and supportive of me chasing my own dreams. But somewhere deep down I was still afraid. Afraid that breaking out of this idea I had in my head would lead to ultimate failure. Afraid that I couldn’t make it all work. Afraid that wanting to be a stay at home mom and a woman with a career would be “too much”. Afraid that chasing dreams for me meant leaving my other dreams for a family behind, that somehow they couldn’t coexist. That I either had to be a stay at home wife/mom or be a working woman.
But as I have learned from my girl Rachel Hollis, I am made for MORE.
I was made to do more than be a cheerleader on the sidelines of someone else’s life! I was made to be my own person. And of COURSE I will continue cheering my spouse on, but the difference is that he can cheer me on too now. I realized that I’m not just a stepping stool for him to reach for greatness, I’m supposed to be up there reaching for it with him! And we will boost, hoist, drag, push, climb, claw and pull until we get there. And then we will raise the bar again. Because more isn’t bad. More isn’t selfish. More is what we were designed to accomplish!
I was created with the potential to become like God Himself. So were you. Let that sink in people!! And maybe I’m the last one to the party of figuring this out, but I freaking got here. And man am I HERE FOR IT. My Creator, My GOD gave me potential to be MY BEST ME. And you know what is even cooler about that? He didn’t put a cap on what that could mean for me. There isn’t a limit of what I can accomplish through Him.
I have learned that the only way to fail is to not try. If I keep doing the same things every single day, future me and today me will be the same exact person in the same exact place. The only way to accomplish my dreams is to call my shot and aim high. To take my God given potential and abilities and put them to work. And so though it seems small, tonight I did the thing. I applied for school again. I’m going to go for it because not only do I know I can do it, but I know that I am worth it and I can’t wait to see what my potential is capable of.
Brought to you by “Freedom” by Beyonce and episode 13 of the Rise Together podcast