Tuesday, July 26, 2016

To the woman that feels like she's falling behind on the time line....

This past week, I saw on Facebook a picture put up by my friend, with another friend in it.
It was a picture of the 2 of them, including about 6 other friends - all of them had gone to high school together.

I so loved seeing a group of girls that are now in their mid 20's that stay in contact & keep up with each other's lives.  That alone is such a blessing.

But what made the picture even more special - they all had a baby in their arms.  One of them actually had 2 babies in her arms.

I saw that picture & just smiled. The cuteness of all those babies together.  The precious relationships these girls have with each other.  The way they'll continue to do life together in this season of being a new mom. It's just all so sugary sweet.

... & then the longer I looked at it, a little twinge in my heart ached.

Mainly because I know there is probably someone missing from that picture.
Maybe a friend that also hung out with them in high school, but as an adult, maybe in a different stage of life.
Maybe she's single.
Maybe she doesn't have a baby.
Maybe she's not even sure where her next paycheck is coming from.
.. or not even sure what direction she wants her life to go in.

Not that she was excluded by any means, but she just doesn't feel like she fits in this group anymore.

It's funny because there for some strange reason seems to be this 'timeline' that people expect women to follow.  & while I do love that you hear more & more women going against the grain of that time line (girl power!!!) I sadly think society judges a little if you don't fall into this chart of things that must mysteriously exist somewhere.

I mean, look at the whole magazine hunt that is constantly on Jennifer Aniston about rumors of her being pregnant. It's because for some stupid reason, the world feels like she's an attractive, successful person - she MUST have a baby to make her life complete.

She told Allure: "I don't like [the pressure] that people put on me, on women – that you've failed yourself as a female because you haven't procreated. I don't think it's fair. You may not have a child… but that doesn't mean you aren't mothering – dogs, friends' children." Jennifer added: "This continually is said about me: that I was so career-driven and focused on myself; that I don't want to be a mother, and how selfish is that." 

I remember getting out of high school & I luckily found the love of my life when I was 20 years old. Fairly young.  I didn't think I was young then.  I got married at 23 & when I see people at 23 years old getting married now, I think, "You're just a baby"... funny how time distorts how you see age. I felt so grown up then.

... but babies never came for us.
At least not babies that made it full term.

Its not something I ever talk about. Mainly because I just don't. I dont find any joy in talking about it so why do it?

What I do know is it did make me feel like it has put me on the outside of many groups of women.
& its not even because anyone MAKES me feel that way.
it's just an inner thing inside that makes you feel different.  An outsider.
I think culture just has a way of weaving in like that sometimes.

And let's just hold up... turn the brakes on this because this didn't mean to take a turn into a sad pity party in any way.

...what I thought about was that young girl that might have seen that FB picture of those moms & their babies & thought that they didn't fit.  & yes, while I felt a little heavyhearted for a moment, I immediately thought of how much I wanted to encourage those same young ladies.

Through my own life of experience, I have seen a little of how this works...

Mainly that you are on your own road.... There are so many different paths.  & it's not always going to fit into the life of 2.5 kids by the age of 28 & a perfect husband that does it all ... oh yeah, & a dog named Max.

It may be you are running your own company, or you actually prefer to be single or you just haven't found that person that God is leading you to, or you know your heart isn't pulled to be a parent now if ever, or you're traveling the world... so many directions you can take in life.

The cool thing about whatever your life does looks like right now?  God can use you.
Wherever you are at. Whichever path you are on.

That is so reassuring to me.  Mainly because I feel like I've lived it.  I've seen how it works.

I truly feel like God has used me in ways that I know He couldn't have used other women.
As I've seen God use other women in situations & ways that I know I could never have stepped in & filled.

God needs me on this path I've been on.
God needs you too sweet sisters!
Wherever you are at.
Every single one of us - all in our unique places.
He needs us to be kind to each other.  To reach out to others.  To love on His children.  To lift one another up.

You can be the face & hands of Jesus wherever you are at - to someone who desperately needs it.

I also find it funny how now, when I'm in my Bible Study group, I look around & see so many different stories. Lots of young moms.  There's some grandmas in there. There's young single ladies.  There's divorce. There's many years of marriage. There's career oriented women. There are women who just want to stay at home.  ... but what happens when we talk?  We all share our experiences because there's SOMETHING SOMEONE can always connect with.

I love this picture because I think its just as precious as the picture I first saw on Facebook of the young mom's with the babies.  That first picture represented to me marriages, family, friendship.

But this picture does too.  In its own unique way.

I just feel like we get out of high school & out of college & we have such expectations of what our lives are going to be.  We see it happen in our friends lives.  & it can be discouraging when our own lives don't turn out like that.

Take heart!  In the end, no one's lives turn out the way they expect.  Years pass & everything changes.  Friendships will alter.  Expectations will shift.

I just want to pass on encouragement today.  I'm not even sure what really prompted this whole thing today. Maybe one person out there needed to hear this today.  I pray so.

Stay YOUR course.  Keep your relationship with God first priority. He will be the one who will go down the path you are on ALWAYS.  Through every phase, through every year, through every event.  God wants to use you wherever you are at on that path.  Be open to that.  Be joyful about that.  Don't loose heart.

You do fit in somewhere.  God's going to make sure of that!


  1. You speak so much into my life that yes yes yes God uses you to mother even me! I think mothering is more of a verb than a noun anyway. I welled up some tears for you this A.M. but I also thanked God so much for the connections you've brought into my life and the JOY!! Grateful for you!

  2. You speak so much into my life that yes yes yes God uses you to mother even me! I think mothering is more of a verb than a noun anyway. I welled up some tears for you this A.M. but I also thanked God so much for the connections you've brought into my life and the JOY!! Grateful for you!

  3. Such truth this morning, Rebecca Jo! Thank you! I'm believing in second chances right now in the season of my life with "trying" to raise a twenty-two year old that God has brought into our lives recently.

  4. What a lovely post! Another blogger made me think of this same topic the other day. It seems as if society has this check list for a happy life and if you are missing a check in one of those boxes than that means you can't fully be happy. That is wrong. Whose to say that any one thing is "missing" from our lives? I believe God has us where we are in life for a reason. I know some question their position more than others but it's all good for a reason. I enjoy being married and wish I would have been married at 23 but instead it didn't happen till I was 27. I thought that was SO late in life....lol. Turns out, it wasn't late at all. I was just comparing myself to the couple friends I had that were married right after college. I took my own path and it turned out alright. Sorry for getting too deep!

  5. This was a wonderful post, girl. It speaks to the ones who don't follow the expected path, but it speaks to those who do, too. I was in college when I met my husband. I had no plans to marry until I was at least 30. I wanted a fabulous career first and adventure. But I knew he was the one from the start and I ended up quitting school and getting married at 20. We moved 1000 miles away from home. The first baby came at 22 and we moved to within 200 miles of home. Back then we didn't have internet and cell phones so to keep up with distant friends the options were phone calls (long distance calls were expensive!) and letters. I ended up feeling like the one left behind. What little bits of connection I had with them faded away after a while as I was dealing with married life, spit-up and poopy diapers while they were graduating from college, starting the careers they had dreamed of, traveling and having those adventures I thought I'd have. We didn't have a thing in common any more and could only manage to talk a couple of minutes before we had nothing to say. After a while we all quit trying. A few years ago I didn't have any friendships left from high school or college. Enter Facebook and the chance to reconnect now that our lives are on more of an even playing field...though I am waiting for my third grandchild to arrive and some of my peers still have children in elementary school! It stinks when we drift away from old friends, but God is good and he will always bless us with new friends for whatever season of life we are in.

  6. Amen! We are all needed, we all have value and worth and we can all reach out to help others.

  7. I totally get what you are saying here. I have been in the situation where I felt left out from my friends who were getting married and having kids in their twenties. I didn't get married until I was almost 30 and I am not having my first baby when a lot of my friends have kids in school already. I am also no where near where I wanted to be as far as my career goals in life. We are all on our own time and I try really hard to remind myself not to compare my life to others. Comparison is the thief of joy...they say.

  8. I also got married young and now, years later, think that I was just a baby. (But it all worked out, so that's good.)
    And thanks for the post. I like to think I am the person who can do it all myself, but I did need a word of encouragement today.
    Jen @ YA Romantics

  9. I agree with this very much! There is no one path everyone takes. My MIL has mentioned how my brother in law and his wife won't have kids because they're too "selfish." I get that as a mother you may want certain things for your kids but they live their own life. If they have their reasons for why they do things, who cares. I think everyone gets the questions whatever stage they're in. Even my mom got asked all the time when she was going to be a grandma. It's like you never escape! I hope we can learn to be more open and accepting to whatever life someone ends up with, if it makes them happy.

  10. OH goodness, I just love this. Thank you for sharing I know it probably wasn't easy. I just love getting to know you more with each post.

  11. This is so true. I never thought I'd be engaged while I was still in college. I wanted to be a mom when I was a kid, then for a few years said I would never get married or have kids, and now I want children again. We are allowed to change our minds, and sometimes we don't have any say in it (with infertility, etc). But we, as women, should never be judged for getting married or not, having kids or not, or the age that we get around to any of it! We don't have to have kids to be fulfilled. Thank you so much for sharing. <3

  12. A year after I started dating K I got the idea that I wanted to graduate hs, get married, and have kids. About a year later I decided that I actually wanted to stick to my pre-Kyle plan and go to college. While I was there I decided that I wanted to get married after college and go off birth control and have kids. While we did end up getting married soon after I graduated college I did NOT get off birth control. I got a job, he started his company, we adopted two dogs. Even though I didn't go off b/c when we got married I thought that by 25 I'd be ready for a kid. I'm 25 and I don't have a kid. Sometimes I question myself because I'm not following my timeline OR the small-town-timeline that folks around here seem to follow. I'm fortunate because God has put people from all stages of life into mine so I don't ever feel pressure from my friends- friends married and on kids #2 and friends without boyfriends. Well, I do feel pressure but it's my own pressure. I think your post is a wonderful reminder that you are where you are because you're supposed to be there :)

  13. This was really tough to read - I mean, it was a beautiful post but when you mentioned about the first photo you saw, I literally felt like that outside person. I mean, I am in my 30's - 34 to be exact, but nearly all the girls in my class are married with kids, some even 3 kids and here I am, unmarried and kidless.

    You know, at 18 that's all I wanted... to be married with kids. But, growing up and working and becoming so set in my ways, I still think of having children but there was a time I decided to stay single for 3 years because relationships never worked out for me. I didn't think I would ever get married, so I envisioned my life without a husband. I will adopt or get artificial insemination and purchase a townhouse and me and my kid would be happy.

    But, that still hasn't happened. I eventually re-kindled with an old flame and I guess we will see where it goes. But, I do feel pressured now and then when I see old friends and classmates out with their families. I wonder if they look at me and say things, or assume things.

    I know what will be will always be, but in God's time.

    I am sorry I rambled away. :)

  14. It's hard. It's hard to be that person, it's hard to think you're part of the group & someone else is that person. I'm not there with kids yet, but every day it feels like someone new on my FB news feed gets engaged. And then the comparisons start. And then I sit & listen to all the BF's friends GF's // fiancees talk about wedding planning. So I just sit there quietly because I don't have one to plan. And then I just get up & go listen to the boys talk because they're nicer // more fun anyways.

    Comparison sucks. But it's so hard when all this information is right in front of you. But I try to remember I don't see it all. That I've got friends whose relationship struggles I know & I do not envy them, but I see their FB posts, claiming perfection & posting the good parts, but I know it's only part of the truth. You try to remind yourself it's that way for everyone, but boy is that hard to remember some days.

  15. A beautiful and healing post! I don't have kids either and have often felt I missed the great miracle of life inside me, but there is so much more. I don't dwell on it and I love, love, love my two stepsons and grandkids. Love lines are just as strong as bloodlines....sometimes stronger!

  16. This is a very beautiful post. It was a long journey for us to have babies and I completely know where you are coming from. Sure, we had babies, but the heart aches for babies when others have it "easier". Thanks for sharing this post and I hope it was therapeutic to write.

  17. Lovely post, my friend. There are pieces in this post that so many of us can relate to, although (as you said), we all are on our own path; we have our own journey.

  18. This was so beautifully written. Sometimes it's hard waiting on God's timing, and it's easy to feel like He's forgotten us. But He has a different plan for each of us, and I'm trying to remember that He knows best!

  19. SO many things I want to say, but don't even know where to begin. You know I can relate to this so much. It hits home.

  20. I have so many things that I want to write here - but I'll just say - You are amazing, you have such a beautiful way with words! xo, biana -BlovedBoston

  21. This is so beautiful and completely agree with the above comment- you are amazing! This will definitely touch many lives out there, just know that.

  22. Oh there is so much truth here. Thank you for sharing this. I think we often do feel that internal but external expectation to "fit in" - and it's hard! I was a little ahead on some of these, met my now husband when we were 16. We got married when I was 21 and he was 20. We graduated, we are working, we are traveling, I am sort of doing my own business on the side... but we don't have a home, we don't have children. We don't really even have a timeline for those things. And that's ok, but sometimes I feel like I'm odd not to want all of that right now. Or not to have it already. My baby sister recently announced that she's expecting - which is so wonderful! I can't wait. But I immediately thought to myself, "should it bother me that I'm not going first?" - the answer is I don't know if it should, but it doesn't but it's still kind of strange. The flow of expectedness takes over and tackles you. It's all hitting me with so many emotions. Very interesting. Anywho... ramble ramble ramble. Thank you for your post and perspective. :) XO - Alexandra

    Simply Alexandra: My Favorite Things

  23. I love this. It really hit home for me too because one of my best friends (my Maid of Honor in my wedding actually) has completely distanced me since I got pregnant. She's still in her single, living in a big city, just graduated law school phase and I'm obviously somewhere different - but she hasn't talked to me since I called her in December to tell her I was pregnant and it's been really hard on me. Part of me wants to be mad and is hurt, but I also see this side of it. So hard. Thank you for sharing this though as it has given me a different perspective on the situation. Xoxo

  24. yes, just yes. This is gold. Thank you for speaking your heart... It's can be so hard when His plan doesn't match our own for our life... yet we are exactly where we need to be. I don't know if you have read Sophie Hudson (Boo Mama)'s blog, but she has a book out called Giddy Up, Eunice that spoke to my heart about this topic. :)


I am thankful for each comment & like to respond to every one of them....
If you noticed I do not respond to your comments, it is because you are a "no reply" blogger and I am unable too!
How to enable your e-mail: BLOGGER ACCOUNTS: To do this, click on your Dashboard, click on EDIT PROFILE and place a check mark next to SHOW MY EMAIL ADDRESS, and finally scroll to the bottom and click SAVE PROFILE.**

Social Media World

Come Follow Me