Thursday, July 12, 2012

Story Telling

I saw this on Pinterest a bit ago and it really fits with what I've been reading lately and just in general what I've been feeling. Oh, hello blog world, I suppose I'm back, we'll see how that goes and maybe you'll get an update on where I've been later, but for now I have a mild rant.

So this quote above talks about the story that we tell with our lives. You can take this from a religious standpoint or not, either way we only have one life and one fabulous story to tell. So over the last month I have read a couple of books by Donald Miller (LOVE. HIM.). The first was Blue Like Jazz (I promise I'll do book reviews again soon is summer, there has been lots of reading!). This was his memoir about when he was college age. I would call him a writer who is Christian, not a Christian writer, but in the book he talks about friends he had who were not Christian and how he interacted with them. Pretty awesome. So after that came out some movie people found it and say "hey, let's make a movie out of this." What followed was him having to write the story of his life over, in the form of a screenplay for this movie. He then wrote A Million Miles in a Thousand Years about what it is like to rewrite the story of your life.

This book got me thinking. A lot. We all have a story to tell. We all have things that happen in our lives that intertwine with others' stories, leading to one great big story. While we sometimes like to forget that we're not the main character in our own movie it is kind of refreshing to realize what an impact our life has on the overall story of the world. The question then becomes what kind of story do you want to write with your life?

Let's take me, for example. I am thirty and single. Of my close friends I am one of very few that is not married and does not have kids. Both of these are things that I want, but that's not how my story has unfolded. I had all the plans in the world to make these happen, but that's not what happened. For awhile I was sad about this and I would compare my story to everyone else's and think that mine wasn't as good and wasn't as meaningful, but that's just not true. In the last thirty years (almost thirty one!) I have accomplished quite a lot. Rather than sitting around and waiting for my story to get going like everyone else's I have chosen to live my story.

When talking about what I have accomplished in my life with a friend last week, I said simply "well what else have I had to do with my life?" I'll be the first to admit that sometimes I try to rush things along because I do want the husband and the kids, but every little thing that has brought me to this point has mattered. And you know what, I have a GREAT story to tell. I have had amazing experiences with amazing people. Some of the chapters are sad and some are silly, but they all come together to make the book that is me, and I'm not even close to done with that book!

I'm not really sure at what point in life I became such an optimist, it really feels quite odd, but it's kind of becoming true. I think that comes along with being happy in life. Novel concept really. I am in such a good place right now. I haven't accomplished all that I want to accomplish, I still want to get married and have kids, but when I look back I don't feel like any of the time I have not had those things, no matter how long my friends have, I have not wasted any time. My time is extremely valuable to me and I do good things with it. Sure I am an introvert and tend to enjoy weekend nights home by myself, but that's a choice. It's just that I don't want to go out all the time. I love spending time with friends, but I enjoy spending time at home too, it's how I recharge myself to do all the things that I do throughout the week.

At some point in the future (no guesses on specific times) there will probably come a time when I meet someone that I want to settle down with. I look back at who I've date or who I've wanted to date (that's an interesting trip down memory lane!) and realize that if I thought those people were special the person that I actually fall for will be spectacular. The difference between that future relationship and those that I've had in the past will be the sum of all the chapters of life that I've had to this point. I have learned from my mistakes and hopefully will have a nice stable, healthy relationship (I hear that is actually possible!).

In the meantime I'm not going to let my age, location and marital status define who I am. If you don't like that I'm thirty, live in the Bible belt and am not married then frankly I have little use for you in my life. If you don't like that I'm thirty, own my own home, have a Masters and can take care of myself, then I don't have room for you either. I like who I am. I like what I've accomplished. And I like that my story has had highs and lows, I am thankful for each one because they have made me the strong person I am today.

So go out into the world and tell an amazing story with your life. It doesn't have to be over the top, just meaningful to you!

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