After last week’s much needed dope slap of reality, I’ve had a few other instances of that IRL (thank you BFF, you are the best) and realized that the things I’ve been at war with myself at were so downright surface and so unimportant in the grand scheme of things, that I almost felt ashamed that I’d had those thoughts, let alone said them out loud.

And then, last night, over “sister dinner” with Jen and Jess (we used to do these every month prior to Isabel’s birth, so it was our attempt to recreate that as we all enjoyed helping care for the baby), I just sat back and realized, wow, I love this. All of it. Despite all that Jen has gone through, we’ve gotten so much closer than I ever thought we could, and we really have all gotten to know each other so much better.

I know that sounds weird, since we are so close, but in a way, we hadn’t totally learned about each other in the “grown up” sense, just from our companionship growing up and all of the fun we always have. But I have come to realize that I absolutely loved this time with her, it’s really a gift from God that we’ve been able to, and it doesn’t matter that my routine is shaken a bit, or I have to figure out when to work out or catch a bit more sleep.

Because Isabel is worth it. Because Jen is worth it. And because our sisterhood is worth it.

~~

And then I look around, and realize, that despite frustrations in some aspects of my life, my life truly is pretty damn good.

I’m happy.

I’m in love.

I have fantastic friends and family.

I am at a point where I love who I am and this stage in my life.

What’s better than that?

~~

And then I watched Joel Osteen this evening, and wow, his message was dead-on. One of my favorite underlying themes from him – happiness is a choice – and it really is. An excerpt that speaks volumes:

Every day we have the choice to choose how we will live: in happiness and gladness or in discouragement and frustration. So many people are living with a war on the inside, thinking, “I can’t be happy. I don’t even like my life. I don’t like the way I look. I don’t like the car I drive or where I live. When those things change, then I’ll be happy.” So they wait to be happy. Some people wait their entire lives. Understand that’s no way to live. God created us to enjoy life and be content regardless of the external circumstances.

The secret to living life happy is finding your joy in the Lord. Every day is a precious gift from God filled with blessings. The question is do you notice them? Don’t be so busy waiting to be happy that you miss the blessings God has right in front of you. Choose to live your life happy now.

Amen to that.

It’s all the seemingly little things that add up to a heck of lot of goodness and joy.

When you read that, doesn’t that make you feel thankful? What are you thankful for today? (my attempt at loosely following along with being thankful, as my sister blogged about, for this month)

I read this awesome list of “10 thoughts on whole living” in Whole Living Magazine (formerly Body + Soul Magazine, a Martha Stewart mag) and just had to share this list, because every single one are truly words to live by…and right now, as I feel more aware of who I am, what I want, and where I want to go, I’m embracing everything in this list…like whoa.

  1. Your body already knows how to heal itself, you just have to get out of its way.
  2. Go ahead, vent a little. Think of it as detox for the soul.
  3. Good posture isn’t about rigidity, but fluidity.
  4. When you can appreciate being alone, you’re rarely lonely (amen!!!)
  5. Clutter is the by-product of indecision. Make sure everything in your space is there because you choose to keep it.
  6. You may not be in school anymore, but there’s always more to learn.
  7. True sufficiency doesn’t mean having plenty; it means having enough (couldn’t be more true, easy to lose sight of this one)
  8. Pay attention to how you walk. Ask yourself what you’re rushing toward – or from (wow, just wow.)
  9. Transform anxiety into excitement, focus not on the fear of what lies ahead but the possibilities you might create.
  10. Lead with your heart, not your ego.

Great list, isn’t it? I think sometimes it is just so easy to get caught up, forget what gives you joy, forget that sometimes there is more to life than the daily grind, and you let go…and something beautiful happens. Happiness.

Yea, I’m there right about now.

I’ve been following Faith, Fitness, and Fun’s Tina on her “30 Days of Reflection for Self-Love” and I must first say that she has an amazing outlook and many, if not all, of her daily posts have been completely up my alley, and I’ve loved participating!

Her post today was all about finding joy, and while I feel as though right now, I clearly have a lot of joy in the “Doctor Boy” department, finding joy when areas of your life are not going well is sometimes nearly impossible to find. But what Tina says here is so right-on:

I don’t think I need to tell you why finding joy in everyday moments of life can increase overall happiness. We all have that logic. Instead, I want to ask you to find it for yourselves today. Don’t avoid it for fear it will get in the way of to-dos. Don’t convince yourself another moment will come soon enough. Don’t hesitate on whether you deserve that moment of joy. Just take it. And walk away with a smile.

Joy is SO elusive when you have about a zillion things to do and it’s hard to see the little joys (or as I have referred to them as ‘little rocks’ of the day) sometimes. For me, today (taking a cue from my sister!)?

…my sister emailing us to let us know that her doctor feels she may have the baby tomorrow. WOOHOO!!!!

Joy.

…having a kick-ass workout this morning (no pun intended…) a la Group Kick. Always ceases to amaze me how much I sweat! Sweat is happiness…sweat is…

Joy.

…getting invited to go see Rascal Flatts on Sunday by Doctor Boy. Um, yeah, so sweet, right?

Joy.

And finally? Gearing up for dinner with Doctor Boy tonight…more on that tomorrow, friends.

Yours truly in joy, swoonage, and yes, I have both eyes open, don’t worry,

Jolene

😉