Growing Pains

By rare and random circumstances I ended up chatting with an acquaintance from my old high school. We didn't really know each other in high school it's more like we knew of each other and that was about it. We knew all the same kids, hung out in similar groups and got picked on by the same bully's. It was an interesting trip down memory lane as we chatted about how far we have come since high school. We both couldn't believe that our ten year high school reunion is soon approaching....that makes me feel OLD. 

Here is a picture of me in high school. This was one of my senior pictures my mom took. I honestly don't even look that different. A decade of life and experience under my belt and it almost looks like this picture could have been taken yesterday. 

Here is my first car, Jimmy. 

I am not sure where I thought I would be ten years from high school, I don't think I had a lot of expectations. I have a difficult time thinking that far into the future, I've never been a very strict planner. But here I am. Twenty seven years old, and wondering how do I measure my success? What is it based of off? 

Here's how I see it. 

I graduated high school having no clue who I was or how I fit into this universe. I was wondering what was past the borders of Paso Robles and what kind of people was this world made up of? In high school my best friends were very "like minded" and conservative, I was ready to live outside of their boxes. A little scared and a lot clueless I went to LA for four years and I wandered through my college career at Biola University. I had a lot of rough spots, I made a lot of stupid decisions, I experienced hurt and betrayal from my closest friends. I started dealing with real, "grown-up" stuff. 
(or so I thought, haha, being a grown up didn't really hit me until after I graduated college)

Picture from my first semester at Biola, crutches and all, courtesy of my horse:

Aside from the few negative times I experienced a lot more amazing and wonderful times. I grew up. I was challenged in every way possible, I learned who I was. For the first time in my life I didn't have someone telling me "no" or telling me their opinion about who I was. I was free to be who ever I wanted with out any expectations. I met and befriended people from all over the world, I broadened my horizons and learned for myself what I believed to be true. I felt free. I finally got to experience life outside of everything I always knew and was previously comfortable with. I have always been a Christian but for the first time my faith became my own choice and I took ownership of my identity in Christ. 

First semester roommate: 

Second semester roommate:

Third semester roommate:

Fourth-seventh semester roommate:

I can't find a picture with my last roommate. we were seniors, ready to be done with college and never really bonded very much. But I think back on all my different experiences and how living with different people has changed and developed me. These were just the gals I shared a room with there were so many more people that influenced me and shared my life during these time. Anyways. I often reflect on the past and think about how it made me who I am today. I have experienced and accomplished many different things in my life. I have reached a lot of milestones but still continue to search and seek. I grow more and more into a comfortable, calm, secure woman in the Lord as each day passes. 

I am grateful for all the people and all the life experiences. The good and the bad. The beautiful times and the ugly times. I wouldn't be the rounded person that I am today had I not got through the tough times along with the good times. I am happy to reflect back on who I used to be. I am grateful that I continue to grow and adapt to this life. Being a wife has brought me to a whole new and different place in life. I changed a great deal in college, I found out who I was. Now I am learning how to be "me" in a kind and loving way. Marriage has pointed out a lot of my "ugly" traits and inner selfishness that I am constantly working on.
I am nothing but clay in the potters hands constantly being formed & transformed, a piece of artwork that takes time and patients to be sculpted.

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