It’s true. This is just a little reminder that you have LIMITLESS potential, sister friend.
The last time I remember feeling limitless, was when I was 13. I was in 7th grade and so many of my friends were on the dance team at my school. I knew that I had little to no experience compared to my peers that had danced their entire lives… but my heart wanted this to happen. Growing up, if I began to excel at gymnastics or dance and was bumped up by my coach to multiple days per week… we couldn’t afford that. So I had to choose activities that were less days per week but didn’t really spark my interest. My oldest son, Griffin was blown away at mama’s soccer skills the other day when we were playing in the yard. He was like, “Mom! You are a rockstar at this!” But he had no idea that soccer was just a time filler for me. You can be good at things that aren’t meant for you. My heart always belonged in a mirrored room with a barre.
I remember walking around my best friend’s house in the 4th grade and physically touching each of her old recital pictures that were framed on the wall. “Why don’t you get back into dance again?! (my friend shrugged) You are so lucky that you can!”
So, when the opportunity came to try out for the junior high school’s dance team… I knew this was my shot. I worked my butt off for the two try-out weeks. I wanted this so badly and had YEARS of training to cram into such a short time period! I knew I had a mountain to climb but I gave it my everything. And when I saw my tryout number on the team roster that was taped to the school’s glass door… it was one of the best moments of my entire childhood.
And I’m still best friends with the girl that I turned around and hugged in this picture. She was there for me then and even more there for me now. How special is it that her mama took this picture for me to always be able to soak up that moment of EMPOWERMENT (I REALLY PULLED THIS OFF) & PURE JOY…
I’m so glad I didn’t let that what if stand in my way of the next 5 years of consistency, hard work, and happiness.
The work did NOT stop with that try out. Hah! I had to push myself to make each dance. Then push myself to be in that front line. A spot that I fought for and deserved. It didn’t matter to anyone else that I struggled to keep up and had to work twice as hard to be there. But to me, it mattered so much. I knew that little 8 year old Laine that was crushed she couldn’t advance to a higher level would be shocked to see me at 17 and 18, beaming that I had secured a spot in the front row… next to the girls that had passed me up.
Oh, and remember that friend that I encouraged to get back into dance? Here we are on our first day of Varsity camp… It’s so crazy how things work out!
A huge pet peeve of mine is when people say they will pray about something… but then don’t turn their prayers into action. God gave us hands and feet and voices and free will to make things happen while we are here on this earth! He can assist in a way that only the Divine can… but He wants us to always be eager to DO. He created us to be brave. Not only for the betterment of ourselves, but for others.
Somewhere along the way, we begin to create invisible limits for ourselves. We place ourselves on restrictions that we conjure up based upon how we feel. Feelings are the ultimate trap because they are never solid.We lay out blue painter’s tape around our feet to separate Self from More Than Self.
You don’t need to make more friends because you can barely keep up with the ones you do have. Play it safe.
You don’t need to go back to school because you are already spinning too many plates. Play it safe.
You don’t need to leave that bad relationship/friendship because thats too scary. Play it safe.
You don’t need to ask your boss for that raise because he might get mad. Play it safe.
You don’t need to switch careers because what if you fail? Play it safe.
Wait. Maybe that’s behind it all. What if we fail? And then there is only ME to blame. I don’t want to choose to sit in that feeling. I don’t mind raising my hand and owning up to my mistakes… but if I go out on a limb that I chose to, and then fail?! Ugh. Nope. I’ll stay right here. Thank you very much.
If only we didn’t talk to ourselves this way…
We turn down opportunity after opportunity (especially women) due to a perimeter that we can just step over… if we only decided to be brave for a second.
With friendships, I have been super blessed. I love a LOT of great women!!!! And I’m pretty sure they love me back 🙂 I’ve known some since I was a baby, from school, from church, from work, etc. My friend love tank has always felt full and I know that is one area that God has had his hand in. I didn’t yearn for more Sista Friends and had kind of boxed myself in to a Tribe I loved. But this Fall, I made some truly incredible new friends that I didn’t see coming. What if I had kept up my walls and said, “Nope. I’ve got enough going on!” Some of these new friendships have really softened me. One of my new friends, Sarah gave me a little scripture book this past week for no reason other than to be sweet and encouraging. I was watching my kid’s play at Chick-fil-A and reading this book when I became overwhelmed with GRATITUDE for this friendship that I didn’t see coming. I didn’t plan this or control this. I didn’t know I needed her but here we are, talking everyday and always cheering the other girl on. God always brings in the right people to teach you the lessons you need for that time period. And sometimes, he brings in the right people so that you can teach them. We can’t turn our backs on His blessings when He calls us. When you start to feel like a new friendship is blossoming, don’t limit yourself and just see where God takes things. He might surprise you! Expand your Tribe.
When I was 14, I was forever mentally changed by a trauma that affected every area of my life. Hence why my last decision as a 13 year old was when I felt truly limitless for the last time. I suddenly knew raw pain and questioned my worth. I felt very, very small. I felt like I had no voice and I was now just an object. From that point forward I remember questioning each new person and experience… “Do they make me feel safe or unsafe?” And if I got a hint of feeling unsure? I ran like the wind. I’ve become quite the runner and still to this day, have to fight those urges to flee BEFORE someone hurts me. I have to tell myself that not everyone is planning their exit strategy. You don’t always have to beat them to the punch, Laine. I’ve said this before in my He Lingers post, but I broke up with every single boyfriend before they had a chance to take off their rose colored glasses. I boxed myself in to believing that if they saw the true me, they wouldn’t want me anymore so peace out girl scout. Boxing yourself in does zero good for you or anyone else. Expand your heart.
I hope all of you take big chances this year. Aim higher. Expand your tribe, your heart, your spirit, and your minds.
I hope you invite that new friend out for coffee or go see a movie together (GO SEE I, TONYA BECAUSE IT’S EVERYTHING)
I hope you sign up for that class or switch your career because you just might knock it out of the park… I’m so glad I stepped out of my box last year on this one. I had NO idea what I was capable of or just how big my dreams were. I am no longer scared to announce that my goal is to become a lawyer. I know I just have to keep setting my mind to the little goals that will get me there, praying for strength, and DOING THE WORK. Expand your mind.
Don’t let the hard stuff thats happened to you in the past continue to ricochet through your present and future life. It happened. It sucked. But you made it out alive and breathing because you have PURPOSE. Don’t let that pain box you in and keep you from who you are meant to become. Now let’s do something better, bigger, and brave!
And remember, “self love looks like effort.” -Katie Summers 🙌🏻
Ain’t that the truth. It will take effort to love yourself. It always will take effort. To go workout, to search for a higher paying job, to crack that joke with that new acquaintance because she just might share your humor, to grow your business, to read a book everyday that benefits your soul, to make time for your favorite hobbies… Effort. For your personal growth. Not just for your kids. Not your parents. Not your spouse. Don’t be afraid to work hard for YOU this year. And to pray for God’s blessing on your goals!!
Say it with me, sister…
WE CAN DO HARD THINGS.
I’m sending you my love energy today