Goodbye 2013

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It’s time to bring this year to a close, and write an obligatory year-end blog post.

This year, man. Kinsey turned 1. We bought a house in Salt Lake City, which gave everyone who knows us well the signal that we planned to stay here longer than a year. We managed to surpass our usual 1 year 1/2 state occupancy, which is a pretty big deal considering we’ve lived in 5 states in the last 5 years. WHOO HOO!

We had some heartache. Every year, does. But, there has been a lot of special moments too.

I also like myself more this year. Is that weird to say? Like, I think I am sorta kickass. I’ve maintained my goal to create community with people, and I’ve managed to stay true to myself. I am uncompromisingly true to who I am, and I feel like knowing who I am at my very core at age 26 (27 here in a couple weeks) is a pretty kickass thing.

I love my husband. I love him more today than I did yesterday, and more than I did 9 years ago when we had our first date. He loves me so wholly, and unconditionally–which is perfect, because I’m really mean sometimes.

My kid. She will be two in a couple months, and I get weepy just thinking about it. I don’t know how I was chosen to be her Mama, but I feel incredibly thankful to know her. She can be a real butthead sometimes, but even in those moments I smile, because I know she got that from me.

2014 has much in store for us. In previous years, I’ve hoped for calmness; I’ve hoped for stability. Every year that I hoped for those things, BIG changes happened. We had a baby and moved across the country and then back again. I’m comfortable just taking life as it comes. Big or small, this year can do as it pleases, and I’ll go along for the ride.

Top Blog Posts this Year:

A Letter to My Daughter on Her First Birthday

My Let’s All Watch the Bachelor Series (you guys should be ashamed of yourselves! 😉

Work It’ Girl Guest Post by Brandy (You can read the rest of our Mom Series Here)

I Saw HER and Cried Real Tears

Bravery (my post about our Miscarriage)

Merry Christmas!

merry christmas from the true and the questions

(Christmas Card made by Zazzle)

Merry Christmas friends. Enjoy today with your family and friends. My sweet family is in town, I am sipping a Starbucks latte, the Turkey is in the oven, and we are getting ready to open gifts around our Christmas tree.

Tis’ the Season.

I Saw HER and Cried Real Tears

Three little kids, running around in circles caught her attention. I stood back as she walked timidly forward. I could see her hesitation, and for a few moments I wondered if she would just watch from a distance. I commented to a group a friends that we were standing with, and one of them said “They are the plastics of the toddlers.” I laughed, but also felt the weight of the moment. The weight of what would happen if Kinsey didn’t feel welcome. I thought of my oldest memory I had of being a kid, standing on the perimeter, watching something just like this, hoping that someone would ask me to join in. My daughter was experiencing the toddler version of my kindergarten moment. My sweet girl inched forward slowly, and with every small step, she looked back at me for reassurance. Suddenly, just as I thought about telling her to go play with them, she threw herself into the moment, forgetting her fear and she ran with them. She ran in circles, and when they fell, she fell. She looked to them for cues on when to laugh, and when to chase each other again. Tears welled up in my eyes. I was never as fearless as her. I remember standing on the pavement, just outside of where the playground gravel started, with the full intention of being alone. A little girl ran up to me after awhile and asked me if I wanted to play. She said “do you want to play?” I said “that’s ok.” She ran back over to her friends at the jungle gym, and the moment she ran away I regretted it. Maybe I wanted her to beg me? Maybe I wanted to feel wanted? I think I expected her to say “Come on! Just do it!” But, she didn’t. I stood there feeling the blood rush into my face, wondering how I would get out of this situation. I wanted to go play, but was too embarrassed now that I had said no. After a lot of self-talk, I just ran over and jumped in and pretended like nothing had happened. I can only hope that my daughter holds onto her confidence. That she will always throw herself into these kind of moments, and leave her fear at the sidelines.

I will experience a thousand more moments like this one. I’ll watch my little girl break free from her dependence and make friends. Along the way there will undoubtably be heartache, and tears. And, I’ll probably often see my childhood relived through hers. It is going to take an intentional effort on my part to stop myself from seeing me, and see her. She is like me in ways, but her own person. She has her own spirit and her way of doing things, and I get to learn to accept those and see the very heart by which she lives.

I will let her make her own mistakes. I will let her be the master of her own destiny. I will counsel and love her in the way that a parent is supposed to, but she will make her own way.

I will be a witness to all of it, and just like several other moments that I’ve experienced as a mother, I watched this one happen and couldn’t help but think about how lucky I am.