i wrote a little introduction on my instagram account this morning. you ‘d think that should be easy peasy yet it feels so awkward. know what i mean? i have written a few recently for different projects and events i’ve been a part of and each time it stresses me out. like is what i’m choosing to say just the good? or if i share the bad is it…well…too much? does the picture make me look younger & thinner than i am? gah. we’re our own worst enemy sometimes aren’t we?
it’s not like social media is a false pretense of our lives but when just a glimpse, usually on the good days, is given it gives the sense that all days are awesome. all meals linger longer. all relationships are delightful. vacations are frequent and grand. the 10 pounds stay off. and good hair days are a way of life. but we know better right? we just sorta forget.
if i can get the stars to align i’ll head out in a couple weeks to the Hope Spoken event and i.am. pumped.
“A WOMEN’S CONFERENCE CELEBRATING THE HOPE WE HAVE IN JESUS AND SHARING OUR STORIES FOR HIS GLORY.”
that little quote above? i’m all about celebrating some hope in jesus and sharing stories. can i get an amen.
i’m not photographing or working at this event. that aforementioned 10 pounds? yes, i bringing that right along with me. i’m probably rolling in a little beat. a little in need of some girl time & great conversation. some hugs & some time spent being known and knowing as well.
last night we celebrated madison’s 20th birthday. it’s always a strange new normal in life once you hit the “raising young adults” stage because there’ve been many a vacation, many a meal or event where the six of us weren’t all there. i know that’s how life just rolls and all but it still feels a little weird. anyways. we headed out to a new spot, Superica, in one of the plethora of hip destinations in atlanta. it was one of the most perfect events we’ve had as a family that i can remember in a long time. there was abundant laughter. we didn’t even notice when our cool waiter, ask for wes, brought out a plate of scrumptious guacamole because our “meal is taking longer than it should have”. we toasted birthdays & graduations. we toasted family’s sticking together. we chatted about our opinions on the death penalty ( i know. light dinner conversation), family tattoos, piercings and “if you could go on a cool trip where would you go?”. decadent bacon wrapped shrimp served on a funky little wooden tray and marinated wood grilled skirt steak covered with a cheese enchilada & a fried egg filled our bellies. any restaurant where marque lights & succulents along with a gold painted deer skull greet you at the door followed by “turn right at the gold glittered guitar” to find the restroom is a winner in my book. for sure.
surely you know in a home with a bunch of teenagers and young adults, a load of girls no less, that every meal is not an adventure in laughter and joy. you know that right?
& surely you know that a quick introduction leaves out all of the stuff. the oh i’m fine, really i’m fine can mask a whole lotta stuff that we’re trying to process and decide if it’s even legit or needs to be mentally packed away.
some days i’m so joyful for my life. i wake up early ready to face the day and i tuck myself into a comfy bed at night beside my favorite person.
some days i sit watching a prime time tv drama and all i see is people having sex with people other than their spouse, back stabbing, lying and cheating and i wonder do people really live like that?
some days i’m ticked off. i’m ticked off that cancer is a part of our family dialogue. all over again.
some days i’m blown away with the fact that dan’s cancer was miraculously found early. i want to choose to live in that joy. yet the fact that he tested positive for a genetic mutation thus increasing his chances for another cancer pisses me off.
some days i’m reminded that i blissfully dreamed of raising my very own little women & it became a reality! smocked dresses & mary janes are now replaced with free people fringe and frye boots. her not me. but not all days end with i love you mama like they used to. sometimes there’s avoidance and hurt feelings, ugly snarky comments and just plain old meanness in our home.
some days i’m so thankful that i am currently able to make a living ( albeit a small one) creatively through photography.
some days i feel small & unseen. forgotten. over looked. alone. and that’s okay because those days aren’t my everyday but still.
i’ve lived long enough to know that evenings like last night where the laughter was abundant are opportunities for the refresh button to get pressed. and i breathe it in and i savor it. i’ve lived long enough to know that the some days aren’t the every days and that we’re all doing the best we can. i’ve lived long enough to finally realize that looking at someone else’s life, especially the ones i don’t even really know, aren’t to be coveted or jealous of. gosh who wants to live all bent up and ugly like that? the joy and the ticked off days. the blissful and the delightful and the frustration they’re reminders that i need a savior. a savior who restores the lost years. he binds the broken hearted. he delights in giving us gifts. he showers us with blessings. he sees us as righteous while we often times can’t see past our seemingly abundant flaws and 10 pounds. or the days when we see our selves a little bigger than we should.
so let’s toast shall we?
lift up your champagne flute or your coffee cup and toast today. its a fresh start. whether you’re rocking it right now or whether you can barely lift your head. let’s toast. let’s toast to the bruised and beat that we’re welcome to the cross each mercy filled, grace blanketed morning. he will meet us right where we are. and toast your friend who seems to have abundance of “the good” and cheer her on. and toast your friend who could use a little grace. go ahead and show up & love her well on the day that seems too big to navigate alone. toast the ones that he has gifted you with in your today. toast the walk that he has called you to walk. toast the opportunity to be salt and light. toast the broken road that brings us to our knees and the days when we stand back up awkwardly and yet somehow grace filled . toast to the tomorrows and the next best thing right in front. toast the necessary endings & toast the fear filled beginnings. toast it all my friends, toast it all. teary eyed and humbled or on top of your game. let’s come to the table and toast.