"Our greatest fear should not be of failure, but of succeeding at things in life that don't really matter." ~Francis Chan

Friday, March 7, 2014

Challenging the way you see the world

I sent this to my husband last week.  This absolutely describes where we are.  I honestly thought if something happened to my first marriage that I could never be that happy again.  But here I am........absolutely infatuated.

Chad and I had something special, nothing will change that.  What I didn't expect was that I could be given an amazing love for the 2nd time in my life.  I don't know why I'm so lucky and God has been so willing to give me another amazing man, but I'm not going to question him :)

It took me a very long time to get used to being the type of wife Chad desired.  It took me years to figure out what made him happy and what made me happy.  I could so easily have been the 'career woman'.  I've never been much of a baking, crafty, 'suzie-homemaker'.  It just wasn't who I was. But his desire was for me to be home with his children and available to him, which I, over time, grew to love.

(I just had to pause writing for a minute to take 3 loaves of bread out of the oven :)

Anyway........I never thought that I could be happy being a stay-at-home, homeschooling, from-scratch baking/cooking type of woman.  There was so much more to life than the mundane, boring life that must create.

But I learned to love it.  I learned to be happy at home.  I learned to be content with little to no money to do anything (including buying groceries, sometimes).  My husband came home happy, my children were thriving, and I was happy.....life was good.  We never had a lot of money, but we always had our needs met and then some.  There just wasn't much left for extras, but it became something that really didn't matter.

Then my life was shattered.

As I have started to rebuild my life, I have had many things come into question.  The biggest thing I struggled (still do) with is who is 'Nicole'?  Not who is ChadandNicole and not who is JasonandNicole.  Who am I and what do I stand for and value in my life?  I was with Chad from the time I was 15....all I've ever known is who I am with him........and Jason is 180 degrees different.

I seriously thought Chad and I were similar......NOT.EVEN.CLOSE!!!!!  Now that I'm with Jason, I can see how absolutely opposite Chad and I were, because Jason and I are so similar.....almost scarily so sometimes.

But the funny thing is.....it works!  We are far from figuring each other out, but we are off to a very good start.  

He challenges everything I am because we think the same on so many things.  So many different points of view.  So many things that I buried because it just wasn't in the scope of where my life was.

So here's the problem.....what parts of myself that aren't 'natural' to me do I want to bring back and which parts are actually part of my sinful nature that needs to stay buried?

For example:  I always wanted to travel the US.  I liked working out side of the home. Chad didn't want me to work outside of the home and he couldn't have cared less about traveling. Now I am back on that path......it is sinful?  Absolutely not, it's just a different point of view.  I want to travel, Jason likes to travel.  To do that, we need to generate some 'play money'. Here's where I'm finding my 'middle ground'.  

I am all for working out side of the home.  (I'd love to work from home, but if that is to happen, God will need to provide the way).  However, in my past, when I worked out side the home, my home suffered.  I will not let that happen again.  I will not accept a job that is so strict that I have to make my family come 2nd.  To me, this is the best of both worlds.  I will not allow my family to suffer to afford "stuff".  When this starts to happen, I will be on the hunt for something that fits our family better.  This is like the old Nicole (wanting to work out of the home) meshed with the new Nicole (my family comes first).  

This is just one example of so many things changing in my life.  So many ways I am figuring out what is negotiable and what is non-negotiable.  Some things that have changed over the last several years in my life are here to stay, but some things that I thought were an absolute MUST, really aren't.  Just because Chad didn't care about traveling doesn't make it wrong that Jason does.  I was happy to stay around home, but I'm excited at the possibility of traveling and letting my children see more of what God has created.

So many things that I was passionate about may be changing and it's not a bad thing.

It's so easy to become judgemental when you get comfortable at a point in life.  If something works so wonderfully for you, you sometimes begin to feel that since your life is amazing that it must be the way God wants it........for you and everyone else.

This is so not the case!!!  I didn't realize how easy it was to write before Chad passed away.  My life was perfect and it was easy to give advice.....now it's all new.  It's a brand new learning experience.  I'm getting thrown out of my comfort zone, though I kinda like it.  I'm sort of excited about re-igniting some parts of me that I buried for the sake of family.  The basic truths that I wrote about are still the same, but so much is different.

And I'm thankful that Jason is so giving and cautious about how he deals with this transition of me.  I'm thankful that he is willing to discuss things that I'm not sure about and fully support me either way.  He absolutely challenges what I thought about so many things but the funny thing is that the girl I was coming out of high school probably would've agreed with him......

I adored the life that Chad and I created.  I wouldn't have changed it for anything.  I don't regret anything and I'd do it all over again....even knowing the outcome......but I have to move on.  I have to continue to move through this life and rebuild myself.

I've finally decided that I can be "Nicole" and still fully support Jason.  I can be "Me" and still let Jason have the final say.  It doesn't make me a doormat, it makes me a peacemaker....and that is a biblical principle that won't change. (Blessed are the peacemakers)

I'm excited to see where our lives go.  I'm excited to see what the Lord has in store for us. I fully trust that wherever I end up, the Lord will be there first and for that I'll be forever grateful.  

One last thought, just because you've been in a content place for a while doesn't mean it is the only way.  It may be the best way for your family, at this point in time.  But in the blink of an eye, things can change and you may find yourself considering all of the things you thought were 'not for you'.  Don't look down on another person's position in life because it someday may be you.  The place you're in isn't necessarily the only place for you to follow God.....don't get in a rut and forget to ask for His direction.  Maybe where you are isn't necessarily where you need to be.  Maybe it is, but maybe it's not.  Be willing to get out of your comfort zone if that is what you are being called to do...........

Thank you, Jason, for lovingly challenging my comfort zone......I'm excited to see where the Lord leads us!

1 comment:

  1. wow not more truer words then those. I have learned that myself when I lost Tom. Even though we weren't together as long as you and Chad were. I also feel God has taken me out of my comfort zone so to speak lately with what is going on with Trevor lately. Lately he hasn't been able to work much because of being sick with ongoing migraines that stay for days and weeks. We are running tests and still haven't found relief yet. With this of course our money situation has been bad. Not even sure how bills this month will get paid. And at times I have to keep reminding myself that God will provide. I feel that maybe God is trying to test my faith and teach me a lesson here. But I keep praying and I know God will get us through this. But I have to say reading your words does help me. Even though as cousins you and I have never been close, I have to say I admire you for all you have done and who you have become. I wish years ago when I lost my husband I was as strong as you have been. Then maybe I wouldn't have messed up my life as bad as I did back then.


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