I have a confession. I hoard things. Don’t get too worried now. My house isn’t filled to the brim with junk. I’m talking I save anything that has sentiment. Anything from heartfelt cards, letters, notes, journals to what the kid’s have drawn over the years. And I never, I mean NEVER throw these things away. Especially, if someone gave it to me. Maybe I get it from my mom because she saved everything we did in school. She still has them in boxes in her attic. Ya’ll, THIS IS ME. I save everything that tugs the heart. Call me crazy but it’s who I am. I first started noticing it was problem when two of my son’s drawers were filled to the top with their artwork. I finally did the responsible ADULT thing and started to throw some away and keep my favorites.
I say all of this to say that when something is important to us we do all that we can to take care of it, whatever “it” may be. There are certain things in our life that we cherish, we want to hold on to because in that one thing lies meaning, a past, a memory, or a story. I also personally cherish and keep all of my journals. Maybe I really do have a problem, but for me my journals are tangible items that represent who I was and who I’ve become. They are written records of my ongoing story. Last week I picked up one that was a few years old and started to read it.
It was such a funny feeling reading through my past thoughts in that particular season. It was a period of my life where I was extremely nervous about how the future was going to play out. My family was facing a lot of change and the pressure was very real. I personally was also in the middle of figuring out who I was mixed with overcoming old wounds from my past. The weight of life had a hold on me. I didn’t feel very strong then. Today now that I am on the other side of that season, I realized that I learned a lot during that time. I am now stronger because of it. I almost wanted to go back to that old me and tell me (her), “You did it Chelsie. You had enough strength to get through that season. You made it out alive. You overcame what you were going through and everything worked out. Yea it was hard, you battled thought a lot, but you were stronger then you thought you were. You are on the other side now.”
I want to encourage you today to take the time to look back on your life. Remind yourself of what you’ve been through, what situations occurred in your life that made you who you are today. Look at your story. Everyone has one. Cherish your story because it’s important. It doesn’t always have to be the good memories that shape us. At least for me it was the rough times that made me stronger. Maybe it was when you first had a baby and it was a tough transition for you. You were one tired mama and the days seemed so long or today you are one tired mama. Or maybe your marriage or friendships went through a sensitive season because change has a way of doing that. I hope that now on the other side despite what happened you are encouraged to face today and the days to come with grace towards yourself and hope for the future. I truly believe that this mentality works my friend. If we look at who we once were and remind ourselves of what we’ve overcome in our life then we can look AHEAD and stand tall with confidence and strength. Your story matters and it’s ongoing. You are a fighter and you are strong. You persevered then and you can persevere today! Don’t let anything take your joy. You got this.