This morning I woke-up at 5 0’clock and went skating. The ice kind. I met with my coach. I practiced my spins and jumps. I was a little rusty, but surprisingly not bad. The smooth ice, the cool air, the smell of the arena all worked together this morning to awake in me a happy heart. Why am I skating? Aren’t you too old for figure skating? Let me tell you how I arrived at the decision to skate again.
I recently read an article about life and the importance of making the most of it. The overall theme was “life is short.” We all know this, yet we don’t spend enough time doing things to fulfill our purpose, to be happy, or better ourselves. I found myself, with two small children, saying “I will do that again someday.” Whether it was my workout goals, nutritional goals, reading goals, spiritual goals, personal goals, etc… I was under the impression that I will have more time in the future. But is that really true? Will I have more time?
Before kids, I must have had a lot of time. But surprisingly, I didn’t feel like I had all the time in the world. I was still busy. My schedule was full of stuff. Today, my schedule is still full of stuff just different “stuff.” Today, I have more time devoted to my kids than to myself because babies are needy creatures. I love it, don’t get me wrong. But, devoting time to my family doesn’t mean I neglect myself. God made me a wife, then a mother, but before all that, he made me an individual. I still need to set individual goals and have things that are my own.
I resolved to work towards becoming the person God has created me to be regardless of what season of life I am in.
Life shouldn’t just be busy. It should be lived on purpose. If we spend our time toward a goal, toward bettering ourselves life is more fulfilling. I want to look back in 10 years and say, “Wow! I have come a long way.” I don’t want to be in the same spot I am now. I want to grow in my faith, to spend quality time with my my husband, my babies, and my friends. I want to be doing things that make me happy.
Life is not a dress rehearsal. We do, in fact, have only a finite time on this Earth. What are you doing with your time?
In light of this revelation, I decided I am tired of putting the things that bring joy to my heart off. This is not a midlife crisis, but rather a “wake-up” call.
So, I talked to my husband and made a list. I listed the things that bring happiness to my soul. I discovered I am most happy when I am skating. At first I thought, “I am just too old to do figure skating again.” I was quite the skater when I was a young girl but gave it up, once I got into dance and boys, in high school. (Side-note young peeps: never give up anything you love for a boy. Not. Worth. It). But then I said… “Wait, wait. Who says I am too old to skate? I am strong and healthy. So what if I am nearing 30? When is 30 too old?” Well, guess what? You are now “looking” at the newest member of the Saint Joseph Figure Skating Club (SJFSC). That’s right.
Does this mean she is doing competitions? That is just weird.
No, it does not mean I will be competing in the little sparkly dresses.
I am doing it for the love of the sport. I am doing it to set goals for myself and challenge my mind and body. I am doing it to be a part of something and frankly to get away from my kids for an hour of “me time.” At this point in life, there are not many free opportunities to go be alone, but with skating, I can be alone. I am alone on the ice where no one needs me. I am free to skate, to jump, to speed around with the cool ice beneath my blades and occasionally on my butt. I. Am. Happy.
My point is, don’t say you’re too old to try something you love again or something new. Maybe you were a runner, or an artist, or a writer (or have always wanted to be those things). Do it. What are you waiting for? Life does not slow down… I have discovered. You will always fill your time at every stage in life. Why are you waiting until you retire? I am sorry, but your old bones are not going to function the way they will today. We are not getting younger or less busy. So, do those things that make you happy. Let’s face it moms, we give a lot. We wear many hats in life. If we don’t stop to do things that help us grow as individuals, we are going to burn out. Trust me. I have burned out before… it was not pretty.
God has given us this one life, to glorify Him; he has given us gifts and talents. It would be a shame to wait to exercise those talents because we were too busy. Let’s do what matters. Let’s make the most of this life. Always remember, this is not a dress rehearsal. One day, it will be too late. One day, we will take our last breath. One day, our lost time will amount to a big pile of regrets or “what-could-have-beens.”
I hope you will make your “happy” list. Do something, one thing, that you enjoy. Use the talents God has gifted you! I will not be competing at the next Olympics, I can assure you. But, it does feel good to be an athlete again. To strive toward goals that otherwise would seem impossible.
Here’s to doing something that makes you happy and gives you a sense of purpose. Now, just do it already!