Kind. Gracious. Loving. Yourself. Unique. Quirky. Good. Creative. An individual. A lover of the light. Strong. Humble. A world-changer. An encourager. Still. At peace. A peacemaker. Silly. Happy. Hopeful. Gentle. Joyful. Respectful. Helpful. Hospitable. A good neighbor.
When I was a little one growing up in Southern California, I wanted to grow up to be the person wearing the Donald Duck costume at Disneyland. Later, I decided I wanted to play ragtime tunes on the piano in a restaurant on Disneyland’s Main Street. Later still, I turned my sights to becoming a pediatric surgeon.
My grandmother used to say that she just wanted her grandkids to be happy. Trying not to start an argument, my mom would respond that it was more important to her that her children were good human beings.
I’d agree that happy hasn’t been at the top of my list. As a full-on emotional being, I love happiness yet I feel all the feels with intensity. My kids, too, swing wide-and-free between emotions, and that’s A-OK with me so long as they’re also respectful.
Who do I want to be? Who do I pray my sons will become?
When I think about who I am and who I will be, it’s no longer in terms of profession. Actually, it’s not in terms of anyone’s profession: while I am Dave’s wife, and Corban and Quinn’s mom, it seems silly to me to define myself as a pastor’s wife, just as it would be silly to call myself a herpetologist or musician’s mom. Jobs come and go, and jobs are activities that consume our time rather than define our identity.
While I hope I embody at least a few of those positive characteristics at the top of the page, I mostly define myself relationally, through my connection to those closest to me. I am a member of a family: wife, mother, daughter, sister, aunt. I am a friend and neighbor. And I pray I will be someone who continually encourages you to have hope, seek beauty, and live joyfully; someone who encourages you to be and become your best self.
Five Minute Friday prompt: BE