Thursday, February 25, 2016

Making the most of your "season"

We live in a culture where everyone seems to be moving at warp speed. Always on to the next season of life and forgetting to actually take the time to enjoy the season they are in.

When it seems normal to be constantly busy, I find myself wanting to hit pause. I want to slow down and make the most of the season I am in right now, which is a constant battle for this Type A, list making, calendar crossing off gal.

I remember when Drew and I started talking about getting engaged way back when. We had been dating since high school, so for almost 7 years and people were asking me constantly about marriage. I got to a place where I was no longer fully enjoying the dating season because I was anticipating the being engaged season. Honestly it stressed me out and probably stressed Drew out too. I had to let go of that or it would have stolen a lot more joy from our dating season. And if you didn't figure it out already, we did in fact get engaged and then married. Phew.

The same thing happened as our 5 year wedding anniversary approached. People started asking when we were going to have kids. I felt so much pressure and I missed out on part of a season in our marriage. And all because I felt this pressure and sense of urgency to move ahead like everyone else.

Now the same pressures are threatening to creep back in. I'm not exaggerating when I say that almost every single Mama that was pregnant at the same time as me is now pregnant with baby #2. But I am determined to not let this stress me out and instead I am going to choose to enjoy the season I am in as a wife and also as a Mama to one sweet boy.

We miss out on so much when we try to fast forward through seasons of our story.

I think it is so incredibly important to make the most of the season you are in, even if it is a hard one. After I had a miscarriage and then got pregnant with Aiden, I was scared. All I wanted to do was fast forward through my pregnancy and just have a healthy baby in my arms. But if I had wished all that time away during that season I would have missed out on so much joy, so much personal growth, so much of my story.

Don't try to get ahead of God in your season. Whatever season you are in, try to embrace it.

Here are a few things that have been helping me to make the most of the season I am in...

1.) Make a list of things you want to do in this particular season and start doing them! Focus on making your time in this season meaningful and purposeful.

2.) Reflect about the season you are in and spend some time thanking God for the things He is doing in this season of your life. When you seek out reasons you have to be thankful, your attitude and level of contentment go up. It's a fact.

3.) Begin to pray for direction and guidance in your season and the ones to come. Instead of wishing you were in your next season, pray about it and ask God how He can use you in your season of waiting. I read this prayer from Lysa Terkeurst the other day when she was sharing about how oftentimes she views a waiting period in her life to be a dead end, when really it is just a pause. "Heavenly Father, I confess that all to often I confuse pauses with end points. Remind me that my thoughts are not Your thoughts and my ways are not Your ways. Help me to not run ahead of You, but instead fully seek You. I trust that Your plan and timing are perfect. In Jesus' name, amen."

If you are stuck in a season and wishing it would just hurry up and end, try to make the most of this season. It has lessons to offer you and the older I get, the less I want to wish my precious time away.

If you are in a hard season and would like some prayer, I'd be happy to pray for you. 
God has you in this season for a time and will help you navigate through it!{}


RachaelA said...

I love this. I am currently in the dating stage with my partner of 2 1/2 years but I think because I am almost 30 and because I know he is the love of my life and everyone around us knows that they are constantly asking "when are you guys going get married?" or "I thought you guys would be engaged by now". All of my friends are married and/or having babies and sometimes it is hard not to compare.
And I find myself kind of going along with what they are saying, wishing away these sweet days, and now your post has made me just stop and breathe and just enjoy where I am at.
Thank you and God bless

Courtney said...

I just love this... we were made to abide and find the joy in every single season! We can miss out on so much when we are always looking to the next one. Totally guilty of this. Great insight and wisdom, sweet friend!


Amy @ A Desert Girl said...

I've been trying so hard to do this!! And so far, my conscious efforts have paid off as a mother. I'm loving every day as it comes. I do sigh over pictures of Ava as a newborn and think that she'll never be that small again and I look forward to so many things we can do when she's older (mother/daughter pedicures! That's one that I think will be really fun). But I'm trying not to focus too much on the past or the future and just enjoy her being four months and one day old. :)

I didn't appreciate my pregnancy as much as I should have because I was so scared about something happening. Like you said, I often just wanted to fast forward and have a healthy baby in my arms.

Great post.

Erin LFF said...

SUCH a great post and such a good reminder- no matter the season we're in!! I am truly appreciating and loving this season I'm in right now. I feel like God is showing me so many things during this pregnancy and I don't want to miss out on one second of that!

Katie said...

I feel like I've been in the longest darkest heartbreaking season for years and desperately wishing it away but I have been trying to learn to embrace where God has me now because nothing changes if nothing changes aka I won't be happy if I am constantly dwelling in my unhappiness. I really needed to read this tonight. Thank you, Allison.

"We miss out on so much when we try to fast forward through seasons of our story." this.

The Heart Of A Woman said...

This is soooooo good!!!

R's Rue said...

Thank you

Unknown said...

This is so spot on Allison!

I too have had to endure those questions from people...we are still getting the baby one, lol. I have to remind myself to cherish these once in a life time moments because as our lives grow we will never be able to have a do over of them. Its good to look forward to the future, but give your present life the attention it deserves...I'm learning to take it a day at a time!

Thanks for sharing your story and insight!


Kaitlin | Eight Pepperberries

Unknown said...

I was literally just thinking this yesterday. My husband and I dated for 6 years before we married. It was difficult to enjoy the end of our dating season because so many of our friends were getting married much sooner than us and so many people constantly asked when we would get married. Then we get married and a year later so many of our friends start getting pregnant and everyone asks us when we are going to have children. I think our society puts so much pressure on young adults to get married quickly and have kids quickly and find the perfect job and the perfect house all before we are even 30. I've had this conversation with some others, and we all agree we feel this pressure. My husband and I have been married almost 5 years and we just now have our first child. So many of our friends are already having baby # 2, and we are often asked when we are going to try for baby # 2. I'll be 29 in April and I'm finally realizing that I need to just relax, not let the pressure get to me, stop comparing my life to the lives of my friends, and just enjoy this season I am in as wife to a great husband and mama to a beautiful little girl. Thank for such a great post!

Shelley said...

NEEDED this so much right now. i've been wishing away our current season for so long now, but this was such a god reminder to take a step back and just enjoy this time and the tide will change when it's time.
and i totally get the 5 year anniversary / when are you having babies thing. people can be relentless sometimes :/

Rach said...

Beautifully said, sweet friend. This is something that is so important to me. From the time I was a teenager, I never wanted to rush the place I was in. Sometimes it has happened, but I usually catch myself pretty quickly and remind myself to be totally present in the season I'm in. I never want to miss out on the magic of NOW because I was so concerned with the future. Again, so well said, friend!

Ashley Lillis said...

I love this post so much! I hate that people always try to pressure you with moving to the next stage of your life because people get to the different stages at different times. We passed the five year mark of marriage last year, and people still ask when we're going to have kids. We're just not there yet, and are enjoying being married!