Friday, March 25, 2011

getting real.


2 years in a row i have blogged a "things to do before" list on my birthday.
i loved writing them, but each year i lost sight of the lists along the way.
perhaps the lists were too long to truly focus on. plus they were quite whimsical in nature to begin with. this past birthday (39) i still had list making on my heart, but i knew i wanted it to be more real. short and sweet and with a whole lot of personal purpose.
so here we go...

a few things to work on before turning 40.
ok. deep breaths....
  1. be authentic. i feel more in my skin this birthday than i have in years. i am taking this as a very good sign. to honor that i want to be more real, more honest, more me. at first i had this quote on my mind, "be you. everyone else is taken." but then just a few days ago my husband came home and shared another quote with me, “Be who you are and say what you feel because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind.” -dr. suess. wise wise man that doc. i love this quote so very much because for as long as i can remember i have always been a pleaser. i am guilty of censoring myself too much in fear of what others may think. when in reality, those who matter get it, or even better, get me.
  2. eat better. this could really be named 1-B for if i am to be authentic i need to get real with myself first. so here i go.... i am overweight. i have been struggled with this fact my whole adult life. i take photos of my face because i am not comfortable with my body. about 8 years ago i lost a large amount of weight and it felt good to feel happier in my body. then i had 2 babies very close together and i let myself slide back into unhealthy eating habits and little physical activity and gained all that i had lost back, plus some. this will be very hard for me. i truly enjoy all aspects of food. i love to cook. i love to eat. i know i need to force some physical exercise into my routine and fast, that i am truly lacking.spring being just around the corner i know all of us will be outdoors walking and playing much more, this will surely help. this winter included far too much baking on my part. i hope by saying (or typing) this out loud, i will hold myself more accountable. eat less ~ chew more. i have no number in my head. i just want to feel stronger and healthier.
  3. find balance. i love my space here and over on flickr but some days i feel unbalanced by my pull to connect online. this is truly a double edged sword. on one hand i have made many true real life friends via the computer, but some days i feel like i simply cannot keep up enough and that in turn makes me feel guilty and that is unhealthy. so balance (that oh so tricky word), i must seek a better balance and let go of the guilt. i am a mom of 3, a wife, a home maker, a friend,a photographer, a blogger... i simply cannot do it all all the time and i need to be ok with that. i don't know how others do it with facebook and twitter of top of everything else!
  4. find my place. i often joke i have gypsy blood in my veins but really that is just an excuse for not feeling i "fit". we moved our family here many years ago for a job and then made the decision to stay put for the sake of our eldest who is now a senior in high school. when we arrived here 5 years ago, i had 2 small babies (one only 4 months old and colicky to boot) and our eldest entering her teens with brought new challenges and struggles. i boxed myself into home life and cocooned. i was insecure about making new friends in my new place... i was older than most moms of young ones adding to my feeling of not fitting. i made TONS of online friends but no one in person. i really dove into photography, busying myself with my new passion. i had no one to drop in on and bake muffins for. no one to share mommyhood with. no tribe. no village. and the longer it went on, the more secluded i began to feel... embarrassed even. then hubby and i had a rough patch (15 years together now) so all my energy turned inward. making social friends was just not going to happen then. we worked hard, and have happily come out the other end stronger, healthier and more connected. so i guess now i feel in that good space, but miss having friends in person to hang out with. i love being a friend. i love having friends. it is such a huge part of who i know i am. this june our eldest graduates and will venturing out onto her next chapter, this opens up a lot of opportunity for change for us. my hope is that we as a family find our place. wherever that turns out to be, i hope we connect to our community, find a circle of close friends to be social with, and then really make roots.
  5. give. give more of myself; to my kids, to my husband, to my community, to my world. i felt so completely invigorated on new years day taking the plunge into the cold atlantic raising almost one thousand dollars for maine's special olympics. i need to continue to search out ways to continue giving. giving is so needed and a i feel a responsibility. it is quite possibly the most important lesson i wish to teach my children. by giving you get so much more than you ever imagined possible in return...
so there it is, i wish to reach 40 next february feeling better balanced and more centered. by striving to reach these goals above i will be better serving my family, my friends, and myself. there is no better time than now.

do you have a list?

28 comments:

lucy said...

i have a list in my head, but am usually not brave enough to write them down. your goals are meaningful and real. i did make the #2 goal last fall, and am down almost 20 pounds -- 2/3 of my goal! so there's that! i'm working on balance right now, and just in the last few weeks actually let go of 8 things in my life that didn't need to be there.

good luck on your journey! i know you'll do it!

windrock studio said...

Hey Kristin, I don't have a list but every single day in my morning prayer are included the words "please help us find our tribe, and our place and our purpose and to be good people of the earth." I'm sharing that so you will know that we are all searching and have a big need to connect.

I love seeing this photo of you, pretty pink lips and sparkly eyes!
Thank you for sharing so much,
SusanMarie

beth said...

i loved reading your list. and could relate to so much of what you wrote.
we are gypsies, too....and after 5 years of being here, i have more online friends than i do real in person friends.
i also just blogged about being yourself.
and the balance of life....no matter how hard i try, something is always out of whack.

*camerashymomma* said...

i love you.
you are beautiful.

i keep a list in my head but you have inspired me to possibly put it on paper which is a scary thought, making it all that much more real.

Marina said...

Kristin,
this is so courageous of you, both identifying these issues and sharing them.
you should be really proud of yourself for doing this.
I send you very very warm wishes for a year of work on these important things, for you to keep the focus on them and for your work to be fruitful.

Andrea said...

Congratulations on your birthday!! I got to your website because you left a comment on mine in response to your shutter sisters food post. Thanks for your comment - very encouraging! I just turned 31 and yes, I do have something like a list (http://www.andreahandl.de/?p=263). Not as well thought through as yours, but something to remind myself of. I forgot to include exercise - that is also something I will have to work on somehow...

Sandee said...

Beautiful post!

xanthe said...

A beautiful honest list, you are one of the most giving people I know, so I'm glad to hear you are planning to take care of yourself more this year. You deserve it. I hope your wishes come true, I think you are on the right path. Big love as always x.

cherish said...

Thanks for your honesty. It takes guts to write it down and then share it with the blogosphere:)
I've been a long time reader and then discovered Shutter Sisters a while back. I'm heading to the SS Camp in October, so I look forward to meeting you there!
Cherish

Team Sass said...

I hope you know you are not alone, I know a lot of us can relate to your words. I haven't written down a list, but it is always there in my head. Maybe writing it down would make it more real. I do love to cross off to-do lists!

Life in Eden said...

You know I think this is wonderful, and honest, and real. So proud of how brave you are. Let's go out and meet the world!

Nessa in OK said...

oh I can so relate to all of this, especially the weight thing. I've struggled my whole life and am now at the heaviest I've ever been.
For me it's just a simple issue of not loving myself enough to care. It's something that's a daily struggle and I hope to overcome some day.
This is a wonderful list. I hope you complete all of it. <3

Erika said...

Love your list. Plain & simple I love it. And I have a gut feeling that you are going to do right by this list.

damiec said...

I learned long ago that action follows attention. If these are the things that you focus on, I know that you will achieve them.

You are so beautiful and warm and your heart seems big enough for the whole world. Wonderful things will happen when you train a little bit more of it on yourself.

As for the balance between the internets and the world at hand, would you let me know when you unlock the key?

xo
-debbie

Anonymous said...

Maine Momma,

I have been reading your blog for quite some time now, but have never commented. Just before reading this post, I was catching up on an old classmate's blog where everything seems to be going perfectly in her life... Always. I love her spirit and positive outlook, but I sometimes have to think, "Show me a flaw. Please."

It's no easy task to admit that things aren't always blue skies and butterflies, and I truly admire your honesty. Thank you.

Megan

sarah jean, said...

a list like you wouldn't believe is what i've got. too overwhelming to write down, too much work i feel i need to do....perhaps that's something i should put on my list "give a little grace to self".....

thanks for sharing your list. you will find your tribe, your people, your community. now you are opening up to it....it takes time, but it will evolve...keep your heart open. xoxoxoxo

lolaperl said...

one of the best blog entries i have ever read. the words are so pure.

kollene carlsson said...

oh wow... so nice to read... very inspiring! you have such a way with words!

jodi said...

you can do all of this. you just have to trust yourself. xo

Heidi said...

kristin, if i were to write a list, it would mirror yours almost exactly. authenticity, weight loss, balance, close friends, i struggle with all of it. your list and the fact that you are sharing it is an amazing tribute to how authentic you really are. xoxo

Sylvia said...

We do get wiser with age. For me it hasn't always been pretty but the journey sure is worth every step. We constantly acknowledge, grow, change... evolve.

Heartfelt and genuine.

Jill said...

what a brave and beautiful list. I can certainly relate to the overweight one and to the friends one too. I had a falling out with a friend in December (literally, a door slammed in my face) and it has made me think about finding my tribe, not just going with the flow.

Good for you for putting it out there. What a bold first step. You've inspired me.

Now, go get 'em!

kristin said...

thank you all so very much. it was an easy post to write, writing fomr my heart, but NOT an easy post to publish.... so your kind words and encouragement mean so very much thank you.

and it seems we are all struggling in similar waters. may we all find that contentment we seek.

XO

Laurie said...

Have you been sneaking around my thoughts? This post captures so many things that have been on my mind lately. The eating better/exercising more (or at all!), the friends... I think we all can use a little bit of this elusive spring more than ever. Spring always seems to make me stand up and take notice, not to mention lighten the mood.

barb said...

i believe a lot of us struggle with these same issues... myself included. with our friendship only just beginning to bloom, i hope that one day (this summer!!) we can meet up and chat about all things 'real'.

wonderful list and beautiful you...
peace,
barb

van said...

ive read every single word knowing that im feeling all of it, plus some. A few years behind, one less kid, half marriage years. Everything else makes sense. Its no secret that i love Maine (ah remember the good first years when my name was van dreams of Portland? good times) and every single woman i admire comes from there. those flight tickets should be cheaper. and maybe i should really make it a priority to take a week every year and see Maine. all of it. all of you.

tara said...

this list rings so true, i can feel it. so much of it resonates with me, too. i'm struggling to get back to my pre-baby weight, i have NO idea how folks can find social media balance -- i love the connections but wow, can it be a time suck! anyway, hugs to you on your journey. sounds like this is going to be a very good year journey for you.

Leslie said...

You are so honest and brave...truly! I have never made a list because I feel I would fail before I ever began. Not very sure of myself, am I? Putting things out there makes you commit, and I guess I've always been a little afraid of that, afraid of failing. At any rate, I wish we lived down the street from one another so we could bake, take walks, laugh, take pictures and just be friends...how great that would be!