26 Years (a birthday recap)

I just turned 27 yesterday. Wow, that sounds so old to me. I still feel like a 20 year-old. Still so much to figure out, still so much maturing to do. But here I am, in my late 20’s. I have two older sisters, so watching them grow up, the ages they were always sounded so old. But, then I would hit that “old” age number and would realize that it wasn’t so old after all. So, 27 always seemed so grown up and established and I should definitely have my problems sorted out by that age, but not so, friend.

In fact, this realization is always so humbling and eye opening to me. I mean, do we ever have everything figured out? Probably not. At least as I get older, I am starting to realize that even those who I thought had it all figured out, don’t. We are all just doing the best we can everyday and hoping that it all works out.

As I was writing this post, I started to realize how many amazing things happened in the last year. My 26th (or was it my 27th??) year was by far one of the most eventful, transformative, exciting, and exhausting years of my life. As I look back on the last 365 days, I see so many opportunities and things to be grateful for. To be honest, the last year was HARD. Hard because I was adjusting to being a new mom. Hard for personal reasons. And hard because I was tired and had to make a lot of hard decisions. I am one to often look at situations and only see the ways I could improve or be better, so in an effort to look back on one of the hardest (but best!!) years of my life, I am listing out 27 things I am grateful for from the last year (with little explanations if needed). And I will also be sharing 3 big lessons I learned. 

Twenty Seven Things I am Grateful for From The Last Year:

Meeting Knox: by far the best experience of my life.

Safe delivery (because it could have ended differently): read the birth story here and you'll know what I mean.

Friends and family who supported us in the weeks after he was born: you need a tribe y'all.

Three week at home as a family of three: paternity leave is amazing.

Meeting my third niece, Junia

Walking every day with Knox: if you watch my Instagram stories, you will know this is our routine.

Adjusting to Motherhood: hard, but amazing.

Learning post-partum isn’t as scary as I thought: Women are strong, folks.

Realizing I am stronger than I thought: see above.

The amazing nurses in the hospital

Starting a podcast: have you listened?

Launching a mastermind group: I decided I wanted to launch a Mastermind for product shop owners and I did. And the spots filled. Quickly. And it's been a dream come true.

Watching my husband be a dad: ALL THE HEART EYES.

Knox learning to crawl: gosh darn, he's cute.

Knox laughing: making your baby laugh feeling like a taste of what heaven will be like.

Bath time with Knox: he loves the water, so up until now, bath time is so fun (and wet!).

Feeding Knox food: this might seem so silly, but the simple, small things of life change when you have a baby. 

Knox’s first steps: so many mixed feelings here! It is amazing to watch him explore and try new things, but my tiny baby is definitely gone. 

Going to Italy: one of the most amazing experiences.

Reading a lot: I've really been making reading a priority in my life and it's been way better than I thought. I am watching way less TV, scrolling less, and learning more. Win-win-win.

Meeting other moms: To be honest, I still don't have a lot of mom friends, but the one's I have met are a God-send.

Sitting on the couch while Knox slept on me: Knox loves to be held when he sleeps and there were a couple months where the ONLY way he would sleep was on me. So, I sat on the couch and let him sleep for hours and watched TV. I literally have no regrets. That time is gone and I miss it. 

Going to the beach with Knox for the first time: Like I said above, seeing the world through the eyes of your baby is MAGICAL.

New product launches: this last year I created my favorite products I've ever made! It's been so, so much fun!

Slower life pace: having a baby will do this.

Making food for Knox

Breastfeeding: one of the most bonding experiences.

Three BIG Lessons I learned in the last year:

  1. I have a lot more to figure out than I thought: this year was eye-opening to how much growth I still need to come by. I am sure that sounds incredibly cryptic. But here's the deal: sometimes God takes us through things to shed light on how much we actually need Him. For me, I was put in a lot of situations to see my insecurities and how deep they are engrained within me. Coming to terms with the fact that this journey is not over, and probably just beginning was sobering. But also needed.
  2. Taking risks is always rewarding: I took a lot of risks in the last year. Starting a Mastermind, launching a podcast, branching out to new types of products, etc. I was scared with every single one of those risks. There was NO promise of success of a good ROI. But I did it anyway. I chased my dreams and told my fears to go away. And you know what? Even if these things had "failed", it still would have been worth it because you ALWAYS learn something when you take a risk. In fact, some of the new products that I tried didn't sell well. That is just really good market research that helps me understand my audience more. That's a win for me!
  3. Asking for help does not make you weak: I brought on my Virtual Assistant, Caitlyn right before I had Knox. Let me tell you, it's been a game-changer. She has saved my booty multiple times and it's brought me SO much peace to know someone else is helping me run this show. In addition, I've had to ask for help as a new mama. As someone who likes to "do it all" and do it well, this was humbling. But for me, asking for help actually shows my strength.