Cattails, Rabbit Trails, and Thistlefish: Nine-Year-Old Me...

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Nine-Year-Old Me...

For no particularly reason, this morning finds me thinking back nine years ago, to when I was counting down the months until I turned ten. I couldn't wait to turn ten. I couldn't wait to grow up. Because I knew how it was all going to happen, how it was going to turn out, how life was going to look. Oh, how my nine-year-old self would have scrunched her nose at the life eighteen years have found me to be living!

I saw it all played out... After getting my ears pierced at 10, I would aim for a big birthday party at 13. Next, a driver's license at 16. By 18, I would be moved out and living dreams. I didn't care to map out where, or why... probably New York. That's where Mama went.
I would be married by 19. To whom? Probably the country boy who lived across the street; maybe a dashing fellow I would meet in New York. It didn't really matter who. All that mattered, is that he would be handsome, and that it would be before I turned 20 (my mother got married at 19, so naturally, that felt like the magic number).

I never could have foreseen where I am, and where I have been.
I did get my ears pierced at 10. When I turned 13, I did have a huge birthday party. What I didn't see coming was falling in love with Jesus that summer. It became frustrating, not having many people in my life who understood my new-found passion. Nevertheless, I've never been the same.
I did get my driver's license at 16 (almost 17) but I did not have the desire to stay out of the house as much as possible like I thought I would. I had grown to love home, and to see the potential to grow there. And that's why, at 18, I haven't moved out. I did go to New York City, but only for fours days last fall.

It's crazy to look back on all the things I didn't see coming, but I'm so thankful for. I didn't know that I'd be giving up my much-loved jeans and wearing only skirts by the time I was 11. I didn't know I'd be fasting and praying for cultural issues by the time I was 14. I didn't know I would find the voice God gave me and be writing songs at 15 and 16. I didn't know I would fall in love the summer after I turned 17. And I didn't know that at 18, I would be home, and happy at home, and growing, and learning, and living fully, even though I'm nowhere close to being married before I'm 20.

Is my life the way I want it right now? No, not really. There are a few things I would change about my life now. All humans think that if they could just change a few things about their life they'd be completely happy. But if there's something I've learned from looking back on my nine-year-old self, it's that

if my teenager years had gone the way I had planned, I would have missed out on so many challenges, opportunities, experiences, victories, and joys.

Who would have thought that I would have been thankful after my plans had been thoroughly unfulfilled? Surely not nine-year-old me. Yet, here I am, and I wouldn't change a thing.

So, who am I to tell God that His plans are not for me? that they aren't good enough? that I could dream up something better? Because I think it's safe to say that His dreams are far more perfect, far more beautiful, far more amazing, even far more romantic than my most extreme dreaming could ever comprehend.

(Photo credit: Josiah Crumrine, and Bethany Crumrine)

1 comment :

  1. I remember well, 9 year old you. As a matter of fact, I remember 1,2,3....,7,8,... year old you too. I loved you dearly and thought you were the most amazing, wise, thoughtful, caring little girl I'd ever known. I remember 10 year old you too. I remember the night you could hardly stand it trying to get your daddy to drive out of his way to my house so that I could be among the first to see your newly pierced ears. I stood at the door teary eyed, thinking..."she's growing up." I remember 13 year old you...that big party in the back yard and coming to know that you had SO MANY friends and people who loved you. I was asked to write my feelings and advice...what? how do I do that for this amazing little girl who made my heart melt when I first held her as a baby and colored with her as a toddler and built forts for sleepovers at my house?? I loved you almost as if you were mine. What do I write, what CAN I write? I remember well 15,16,17, and 18 year old you and there are still no proper words! Still kind, loving, thoughtful, insightful and inspiring. And I DID learn to love another little one (or 2, 3, or 4) as much (and more) than I ever knew I could. :) You are so special to me and I love you and love reading your heart. thank you for sharing it so transparently.
    ~ Aunt Lee-Z