Thursday, December 17, 2009


we scored today on toy story toys for 15c each at the thrift store. tristan kept trying to shove a penny into ham's coin slot despite my explanations that he isn't a real piggy bank. i also found 2 beautiful hardcover children's books for 49c each and was happy with my finds even though we didn't get what we were originally looking for. what i really wanted was a card table. something cheap and smallish and the perfect size for doing puzzles on. i know you never would have guessed it, but josh and i have a secret passion for puzzles. i've always been a fan of puzzles (coming from a family of unathletic geeks, that really should be no surprise), but josh was not a fan until we got married. i actually think i have a picture somewhere of the first puzzle we ever completed together!

yep, there it is and there we are. a puzzle virgin no longer, josh became as passionate about doing them as i was. neither of us are into the really complicated, frustrating types of puzzles; we just like something to do in the evenings while we listen to music. we prefer charles wysocki and have gathered quite the collection over the past 5 years. the only issue is that when we're doing a 1000 piece puzzle, it tends to take over our entire table, leaving us with hardly any room to eat. unfortunately a used card table was not to be found today...i'll try again next week.

i've been feeling slightly nostalgic lately, probably stemming from the fact that josh and i began our relationship right before christmas 7 years ago. i've been looking through old pictures and blog posts and sighing longingly every now and then. don't get me wrong, i would never trade my world today to be able to go back in time and re-live those moments. i think my longing sighs were more for my younger self. in just over a month i am going to turn 30. it looks strange even typed out like that. i don't feel like i'm experienced enough to be a 30 year old. do you think they'll let me turn 30 without a parent's signature? i'm still 23, so how can i have lived for 30 years already? and yet, when i look in the mirror i realize with a startling sense of disappointment that i certainly don't look 23 anymore. i really do look more like i'm on the brink of being 30.

the pictures of my former, younger self smile at me, and from all appearances i look happy and carefree and young. i was all of those things to an extent, but i can see behind my own eyes (because i lived there once) that i still didn't feel like i was enough. i never really felt smart enough, talented enough, outgoing enough, fashionable enough, pretty enough. enough for what or whom, i have no idea....probably the general population of north america. i want to yell at my 22 year old self in the photo, saying "forget all of that stuff! you are pretty, you are smart, you are just who you are supposed to be, so stop worrying about what everyone else thinks and just get out and enjoy your life!" i didn't go around feeling depressed and sad all the time or anything like that, but i just had this idea that i should be better than i was somehow.

my friend shannon posted a picture of herself on facebook today. in it, she is glowingly beautiful; an absolute knockout. she commented on her picture that it was taken before she had kids and in that comment i could almost hear her own longing sigh. yet i wonder, when that picture was taken, did she feel as beautiful as she looked? do we ever feel as beautiful as we look? or does it just take an extra decade or so before we realize just how lovely we were?

as much as i dislike looking at myself in the mirror nowadays, inwardly cringing at all of the changes i see, i am determined to begin to look without such a critial eye and to try to see a loveliness that is there. i know it is there because God has gifted every woman with a measure of beauty since the day he created eve. if i don't see it in myself, my fear is that i never will see it except in images of the past. and i think that a decade is much too long to feel as if i am enough right now.


Z-Mama said...

Beautiful post, Heidi! I think you have really captured how most girls and women feel about least definitely how I feel about myself. Why didn't I know back then...?!

Bonnie said...

I feel the same. I'm turning 30 in 9 days. I was also expecting to see a very recent picture of your *almost 30* self after your last paragraph so we can all remind you how beautiful you are right now.

kelly ens said...

i can totally echo this post too. and being oh so experienced at 30 (you know...all 3 months of it), it's not nearly as bad as i feared all these years. but i wish i would have appreciated myself back in my younger years the way i deserved to appreciate myself.
but what a journey it is, right? and now, with more wrinkles, a few gray hairs, and definitely more bumps and lumps than ever, i am actually the most confident i've ever been. i guess that comes with the blessing of an incredible husband (and the grace of God to really love myself!).
by the way, i'm sure this wasn't a dig for compliments, but i'm going to say it anyway: i think you are absolutely stunning! have thought so since i first started stalking your blog :)

Shannon said...

perfectly captured indeed.

Also funny, I always thought you were way too cool to be my friend growing up. We missed out.

Jennifer said...

Being nostalgic happens around significant birthdays.

When one turns 30 we don't necessarily wish to be 20 again. But when we turn 40 I think we'll wish to be 30 again.
And 40 is the new 30 or so I'm told.

I prepose this little remedy...whip your hair into a pony tail and put some eyeliner on....go get ID'd for a bottle of wine!
(don't take the kids with you of course)
Getting Id'd never fails to cheer me up.

You'll be welcomed to the 30's club all in due time :)

Jordan and Breanna Abeel said...

This is a great post Heidi, I think you are a very beautiful woman still, and a mother I look up to. I am also a secret lover of puzzles myself :)

Grandma J. said...

I too am still the little girl I was way back in childhood. Your post is beautifullly expressing what I could identify with too. With age comes wisdom and that is what gives us a healthier perspective. I still wake up surprised that I am 55 - the mom to an almost 30 year old who is not even my oldest child! Yikes! But it kind of hit both dad and I when we were asked twice this summer if we were eligible for the senior's discount. Ouch. Even though the discount was for 55 year olds, we kind of wondered - how did they know??

Christy B. said...

I echo everyone's sentiments, in that I think we all go through this, and you captured it perfectly. I went into this weird panic when I was about to turn 30, because I hadn't accomplished what I thought those near 30 years were "supposed to." One thing I have recently learned, is to appreciate where you are now, because trust me, in 10 years you will look back and think, why didn't I just accept myself for who I was? It's the law of diminishing returns we all go through, I think. The "if only I was..." skinnier, richer, in a house, with a better job, etc.... It's a tough one to swallow sometimes though!

And yes, you were and are all those things...beautiful, smart, funny and a great friend!

Love ya lots,

lil said...

Well, I'm not going to mention age (even tho my B'day was last week!) but the fact that Wes got me a 1000piece puzzle!! I've got it on the dining room table, but it will have to move off for Aleah's 4th
B'day party on Sunday. I do have a couple extra small tables, so I can move it easliy!!
Happy puzzling and visiting!! It's so fun to have it out, and when friends pop in, we just chat as we get another section done.

Jessica said...

Oh so true & beautifully written. I wish I knew now what I didn't know then. But I guess it's all what makes us who we are. There are so many areas in life I've been reflecting on as well. Thanks for this post, it makes me feel like we're commrades in war or something.