Saturday, January 11, 2014

2013 in Review: Genuine

I know, I'm late to the party. 
Better late than never when it comes to talking about my favorite year thus far. 

On December 31st, 2012 Seth and I were in New York City, finally on our honeymoon! We spent the day walking from the middle of Central Park all the way to Greenwich village, instead of standing in the middle of times square for 20 hours straight. We ate authentic NYC pizza in Greenwich Village, and hitched a cab back to our hotel before the evening festivities began. We spent over $200 to smoke hookah at a fancy hookah lounge and decided to skip a nice dinner for the sake of our wallet...oh NYC on NYE, your prices are outrageous. At midnight we got as close as we could to Times Square, ate street food for dinner, and kissed under the sparkling Christmas tree at Radio City Music Hall. 

On New Year's Day we boarded a cruise ship and headed south to the Bahamas. 

We spent 8 days relaxing on the ship and exploring a new country! We had a blast. 

Shortly after we returned home we brought home our new furry family member, Penelope. 
She was 4 months old at the time. 

She is now a maniacal cat who drives me nuts on most days. 
But I do love her, a lot more than I expected to.

I also learned how to crochet in January 2013. I am proud of what I've accomplished so far, with the reopening of my shop and the growth of my craft!

In March, we became official members of Garden City Church, and also watched some dear friends meet Jesus and get baptized. There is nothing more beautiful than a life reborn in Christ.

Also in March, we got the surprise of our lives.
 Some curious back pain turned out to be a baby!
It's crazy thinking back to those early days of learning we were pregnant.
So much confusion, anxiety, wonder, and excitement filled our minds.
I was and still am so thankful we had 9 months to prepare! (and even after 9 months we still weren't quite ready)

In April we traveled to Seattle to visit my best friends.
Melissa's boyfriend proposed that weekend, and we got to celebrate their engagement!

We also got to meet up with my college roommate Tori, who is an amazing photographer and took some baby announcement photos for us!

In the next few months we did a lot of growing.
Scratch that, I did a lot of growing. 

Over the summer we traveled south to L.A to visit our dear friends Sean & Carolyn. We spent the day at Disneyland and saw one of our favorite comedians Jim Gaffigan live!

I celebrated my 23rd birthday on July 26th. 

I traveled to Portland to visit Melissa and Ashley for one last hoo-rah before the baby arrived! They celebrated me and Felix with a special little baby shower. We also shopped, and found Melissa's wedding dress!

In August we traveled to Tahoe for a baby-moon. Lots of relaxing, waddling, and a fun day of boating too!

In September we celebrated one year of marriage. One crazy and special year it was. 
We kept it low key, since I was super pregnant at the time. But, one of my favorite things was getting to surprise Seth by singing him a song, the song that we had our first dance to at our wedding. It was a teary, beautiful mess indeed. 

We went to dinner at our favorite place in Morgan Hill, ate a remake of the top tier of our wedding cake and spent one night in San Luis Obispo.

We got another surprise in September and found out that we had to move! We moved to a new apartment near downtown Gilroy. It was a big move for us, especially with me being unable to help with most of well...everything. Our new place is cozy, but we're making it work.
I'm finally learning the art of getting rid of crap I don't need!

I quit my job at CRC when I was 35 weeks pregnant!
They celebrated Felix and I with a little cake before we left. 

In October Melissa and Ashley flew down to California for our baby shower. We had a huge baby shower BBQ, and it was fantastic. There really is nothing better than having all of your favorite people gathered in one place. 

In November we laid low. I was due at the end of November but felt like he was going to come at any point. Those last few weeks were quite uncomfortable but we managed to make it to a few baby classes before Felix arrived!

My due date came and went, but a week later Felix arrived on December 8th, 2013 changing our lives forever. 

The rest of 2013 was spent trying to navigate the first few weeks of being a mom. 
Felix is now 5 weeks old. He is growing like a champ! I have learned a lot about myself in these past few weeks, especially with my emotional endurance. Aside from the physical struggles of giving birth, I have had to deal with the emotional stress of not being able to breastfeed Felix. The circumstances have certainly put my pride in check, which is something I so desperately needed. I have also learned to admit that I need help, and also to ask for it! 

I'm also learning to live with my post-baby body, which is a lot more atrocious that I had originally imagined, especially when my plan for weight loss included breastfeeding. I did not make a plan B in case it didn't work out! Pregnancy is so physically hard on your body and I feel like it will never be the same. And yes, I have "earned my stripes". Yes, my body has just done something amazing. Yes, the reward is worth it. Yes, yes, yes. I agree with all of the other cliche things they say about your post baby body in an attempt to encourage a woman who has just given birth.
But, I have struggled with my body image since I was 7 years old, and I wish that could magically change when I gave birth but it didn't. 
And that's ok. 
I guess I need time, discipline, and some will power to get myself back in shape and more healthy. 
No doubt I'll be running after Felix in no time, so let's hope that contributes. 

Last year, I chose the word genuine for my word of 2013. 
I wanted to be authentic in word and deed. 
I wanted to commit to being fully present, fully aware, fully vulnerable.
I wanted to experience something raw, awe-inspiring, maybe even terrifying. 
I wanted my heart to be full of truth.
Part of that meant not covering up tough emotions or circumstances, masking them because it was easier to throw them under the rug than to deal with the realness of it all. 

I definitely got what I wanted.

2013 was full of surprises, emotional strain, stress, and sometimes even terror. 
On the flip-side, 2013 was full of new experiences, relational growth, maturity, and a beautiful baby.
My faith in God grew in 2013.
My understanding of His love and care for me grew immensely. 
I was more honest and open that I have ever been before. Most of that honesty was written into this blog. I've learned to lay everything out on the table, because I'd rather be honest about how I'm really doing than leave people with a sense that I was somehow ingenuine or trying to cover something up. 
I want people to know the real me, junk, sin, and ugliness included. 

I'm sure 2014 will be equally full of surprises.
Seth will be graduating in May, and he will begin the search for a full time job somewhere in the Bay Area. That thought alone is probably more scary for me than it is for him!
We will also be trying to navigate what my work life will be like. I still have the opportunity to do some part time work, but I'm not sure how beneficial working will be for our bank account if we have to pay for childcare. 
Additionally, my Etsy shop is doing well and I would love for it to continue to grow so it could support us more. Any ideas on how to help it grow more are welcomed!
And of course, Felix will grow and change rapidly in this next year. Right now I stare at his tiny little self as he snores away completely in awe of how much he has already grown in the past 5 weeks! 

"Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid." John 14:27

"I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world." John 16:33

Choosing one word to focus on for an entire year isn't easy, but in light of the craziness of 2013 I want 2014 to have a little more peace. 
Ok, a lot more peace.
 Not that it will be any less busy or crazy, but I want my heart to have more peace in the midst of it all.
I want to focus less on my plans, and focus more on fixing my eyes on Jesus and trusting His plan. 2013 taught me that my plans kinda suck. Or that I just wasn't meant to make them in the first place. 
I want to put my plans to rest, and find peace in the unknown. 
I want to have peace about my lack of control, I am so often crippled by my fear of things I can't control. 
I want to worry less. I want to spend less time being emotionally distraught over circumstances I can't control.
My mother in law put it so perfectly the other day, "It's time to put your energy into things that you CAN change." (This was in regards to breastfeeding but is a good principle for life in general)
I also want to experience more peace about my own life so I can devote time to serving others in the midst of their crazy lives. Serving others is an easy way to forget myself and my pride. 

Part of experiencing new peace will be an acceptance of impending chaos. 
This is the glorious reality that Christ has offered. We are the blank pages and He holds the pen!
 And surely He is a much better story teller than I. 

peace out!

No comments:

Post a Comment