Tag Archives: staying young

Why I Stopped Being Afraid Of Change

  
There are many things in life that refuse to stay the same. No matter how much you’re enjoying their present state, there is nothing you can do stop them transforming, and once they have, you jut have to adapt. The weather is an example you’ll be familiar with if you live in Britain, or the seasons if you live anywhere on Earth. No matter how much you’re enjoying the long days of Summer, Autumn and Winter will follow and remind you that having daylight is something to be grateful for. (Speaking of daylight why is it now dim by 4pm and pitch black by 6?! I do understand that we have shorter days now but I don’t remember the darkness being this severe. What will happen in January, one hour of sunlight for lunch sandwiched between a pitch black journey to and from work?!?! Alas, I digress.) My point is that time, and all the joys/sorrows it has to bring, waits for no man. Whatever your sentiments, you have to get with the programme.

As I child I remember looking forward to the day things would change. The days I’d get to choose what I wore each day, free from the oppression of school uniform, the days I’d get to tell the chef what I wanted for dinner, instead of being forced to consume my 5 a day by a tag team of Jamie Oliver and my mother (if you’re reading this Jamie, I’m still not over you getting rid of the vending machines), the day I’d get swooped off my feet by Prince Charming and live happily ever after in my beautiful castle. 

You can probably tell that my views on growing up were somewhat idealistic. I remember turning 13 and feeling like I’d really developed into a big woman. I may have only been in year 8 but now I had become a teenager, I could now follow suit of all the teenagers before me, and rebel against ‘the man.’ LOL. My mum soon put me in my place about that- it was still her house, her rules, and my new found age wasn’t going to do anything to change that. Still, I looked forward to growing up and getting all of the freedom I knew came with old age. I ignored the people telling me to enjoy my youth, to enjoy life in the moment because one day things would get complicated, until one day, I started paying bills, and having to make the difficult decisions they had spoken about, and realised I had become one of them.

The future looses its ‘happily ever after’ Disney edge, when you realise the things you’ve dreamed of might remain out of reach, and the things you were looking forward to come with a caution sign. You leave university without the foggiest of what you’d like to do, let alone the 5 year plan they ask you to recite in interviews. You meet someone and fall in love, wondering if you dare have the audacity to believe you won’t follow in the divorce statistics and trends. You realise that believing in yourself doesn’t equate to getting everything you think you deserve. You wonder what you’ll actually have achieved by 30 and you question if life will ever stop feeling like a hard grind.

That can be the reality of growing up. Fairytale endings begin to fade along with the feeling that your opportunities are endless. The future is one big uncertainty so how are you supposed to look forward to it?

There is a constant.

Whether you believe in him or not, there is a God whose love for you doesn’t waver, whose help is ever- present in times of trouble, who is the same yesterday, today, and forever. If you’ve read my posts about the crazy year I had in 2014, you’ll know that in one summer the trajectory of my life, filled with a good degree and grad scheme went on a huge diversion, but it’s one year later and I’m still standing, thanks to one man. Jesus.

If you’ve lived for any length of time you’ll know that good things don’t always happen to good people, God doesn’t even say that loving him means that good things will always happen to you (no matter how much you put in the offering, and how many hours you spend on your knees in prayer.) God promises to be with you through the changes, hold your hands through the storms, never leave you nor forsake you.

For that reason, the future is bright. You have nothing to worry about when to live is Christ and to die is gain. You might still have to face weekday mornings with someone’s armpit in your face, and a boss you can’t stand, and and exams you wish you didn’t have to take, but you can find peace in the knowledge that God has a plan, and the one he has for you is good.

“For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the LORD, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope.” ‭‭Jeremiah‬ ‭29:11‬ 

Love you like a full English and a cup of tea

Xxx

3 Ways To Avoid A Mid-Life Crises

  
I love birthdays. They’re one of the few times in the year that all of your friends gather together and express just how much they love you. It’s always humbling to hear the difference your friendship has made to someone’s life, and heartwarming to see that you mean as much to your closest friends, as they mean to you. I love the cake, I love the cards, and there’s a special place in my heart for the influx of Rosé that birthdays seem to bring.

On Tuesday I turned 23 and alongside the usual excitement of the lovely day I was about to experience, was an overwhelming anxiety about what I had done with my life so far. I remember when birthdays were all about sparkly birthday outfits and choosing an activity that your friends would enjoy to celebrate with you doing. 23 has brought me face to face with the feeling that I can no longer use ‘being young’ as an excuse or as a testament to how ahead I am in life. With 23 comes great expectations and this year, I have felt the weight that growing older had brought. As I have fretted over what turning 23 would mean for me, I have been rightfully ignored by people over 25 and helpfully consoled by the under 25’s who are still close enough to my age to sympathise. 

I am under no delusions about my age. I know I haven’t suddenly become decrepit, and past it, and ancient. However, I cannot ignore that I have reached an age that makes me a ‘real’ adult. I’m in the age bracket of climbing the employment ladder, and house buying, and marriage and not-far-off babies, and the pressure of that makes my heart race. As I have worried that I have not come far enough for a girl of my age and background I think back to the things I learned at 22 and have no choice but to snap out of it!

1.Your education does not define you

I was knocked off my ‘smarter than thou’ pedestal when my degree results came out, and for a while struggled with who I was, if I was no longer the clever girl teachers had been writing in my reports over the years. I battled with self-confidence as I questioned all the things I thought I was good at, until I left my skills and talents at the door and developed a confidence in God. When you lose the very thing that defines you, you realise that you need to find a definition that is stable enough to last your lifetime. God is the only god that can do that. You might be smart and you might be skilled at x, y, and z, but what you can do or can’t do, cannot dictate who you are. Rest in the peace that you are a child of God and trust that you will become the things that God says you are.

2. Your salary is not your source of provision.

I learnt the hard way that jobs can be lost while the things you have to pay for remain. Having to trust God to provide for my needs, completely changed my perspective on my salary. No job is a sure thing and you have no guarantee that you’ll get to leave every place you work on your own terms, with your next job is already in place. Last year God came through for me right when I needed him and showed me that he is my ultimate provider.

3.Your career does not encompass your entire purpose 

God has called you to do something bigger than your job. You may not feel like you’re career is where you need/want it to be, but don’t let that make you feel like you’re failing on all fronts. Now is the time to seek what God has called you to do and make sure, in spite of where your career is at, you’re focused on fulfilling your purpose. What good is it to become CEO and make no steps towards the mission God has for you?

If getting older has knocked the steam out of you, I hope this post encourages you to view your birthday with less disappointment and more excitement about what God has in store for you this year. Your CV will not get you into heaven and your salary cannot pay the debt of sin. Let’s thank God for the grace we have found in Jesus, who gives us every reason to be grateful for our lives. You may not know what you have to live for, but you can take comfort in who you live for everyday.
Peace and love and birthday cake
Dani xxxx