Life and Barnes and Noble

Last night I went bargain shopping all alone! My husband was so sweet to give me a break. He has been working so hard on everything for about six weeks straight- his job, the house and projects. He is totally my hero. As hard as I try, I can't keep up with his amazing effort. I am ready to fall asleep every night and he is still going strong.

Yesterday, Isabella was really cranky- I am not sure if she was a little sick, has an allergy or was teething, but she would scream at random times and then go back to playing. She wanted to be held most of the day too, so I was quite exhausted after cooking dinner. My husband offered to give me a break and let me go to Barnes and Noble and shop by myself.

I stopped in at Barnes and Noble, had an IBC root beer and a Rice Krispy treat and planned out more of my trip. I had already printed my coupons and made my list, so I was just looking over it.

As I sat there at my little corner cafe table, I could hear other conversations going on around me. One table over was a young couple looking over their engagement pictures. They were adorable- energetic, in love with each other and with life. Being only three feet away from them, I couldn't help but overhear their banter. It reminded me of my husband and myself about eight years ago. We still have the banter these days, but it's heavier somehow. I can't quite put my finger on it, but I think it has to be either age, tiredness, or responsibility that hovers over our conversations. We are still like them, only with less energy.

At another table on the other side, I heard two young girls, likely right out of high school or in their first year of college. They talked about people in their lives and the decisions they were making about school as if the rest of their lives were to be determined by their conversation.

They talked about their relationships with parents and old boyfriends and how those people would be affected by their choice to get a two year degree instead of a four. So very much drama about things that, from an outsider's perspective, seem so insignificant in the course of their lives. I see so much of myself in those girls too. Living for the excitement of the moment, hanging on every decision as if the rest of my life depended on it. I still do that now- analyze, dramatize, and discuss each decision being made- as if my focus on it will somehow determine the outcome.

I remember how exciting it was to be that young, carefree girl with the world ahead of me. But in reality, I much prefer the older version of me- the one that comprehends that she can't do it all on her own.

We have so much life ahead of us, but in eight years we've realized that life really isn't in our hands to decide. We have so much more purpose now- so much more time to see God's plan at work. We've learned more about trusting in Him. We've seen His hand move in our lives.

But really, it's a linear progression. In eight more years, I will look back at the 25-year-old me and see that she didn't know much at all. She had only an inkling of what life was really like.

And for the first time in my adult life, I am actually excited to grow older.