a simple christmas tree

posted on: Thursday, December 19, 2013

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This year, our tree was fairly bare bones and very simple. We put up white lights, which I begged Adam for since he usually prefers the multi-colored ones and to my delight, he obliged. With our wooden star on top, it was so simple and beautiful that I never felt the need to add ornaments. We were going to add simple bulbs this past weekend, but it just didn’t happen. Call it part laziness and part contentment with just a very simple tree this year. I think having a simple and minimal tree is very appropriate for where I am at this point in my life and how this year has been. This year has encompassed some of the hardest moments and some of the most life-changing as well. We had major highs and incredible lows, but I know the strength we have gained from it all is setting the base for an incredible new year.

A few months ago, in counseling, I discovered the source of much of my anxiety and (to put it in a very small nutshell) I realized it was because I was constantly trying to be who each individual person in my life wanted me to be. It was so stressful and incredibly exhausting, especially in this world of social media where we feel like we have hundreds of friends we need to keep up with. I’ve been hurt a lot by people in my life and always wondered what I had done wrong, always blaming myself. I’d try to fix things and adjust who I was to try and fit what that person wanted me to be, because I wanted them to be happy with me, even if it wasn’t my fault. I was constantly adjusting my sails and trying to fit into everyone’s mold. It doesn’t work and led to so much stress and anxiety in my life.

Once we go to that point, it was then that I realized that that was the core of why I had no idea what I wanted to do with my life, I spent most of my life just trying to be what I thought I was supposed to be. Discovering that was a defining moment in my life and one that I will never, ever forget. Tears were running down my face as I felt part relief and part sadness at the realization of all of this. It was as if I had been sick my whole life and FINALLY had a diagnosis.

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Since that day, I’ve slowly been finding myself. It’s going to take a long time, I’m reminded constantly that I have twenty-six years of this stuff to let go of. So, I’m starting at the beginning. Bare minimum, just like my tree. I’ve been learning what I truly like and not just what other people like. I’ve been slowly discovering who I am naturally and not being afraid of that. Not being afraid to let people down, just by being myself. It’s a process. I’ve been working on my environment a lot, I’m finding myself wanting to clean out everything and donate bags of things that just never truly fit me. I want to simplify by finding what I truly love and only filling my home with those things.

And you know how I shared last week about starting over and trying to figure out what I want to be when I grow up? Well, I figured it out. Last Saturday. The pieces came together and everything clicked. I was so nervous-excited about it that I couldn’t even eat lunch. I haven’t felt that in a really, really long time.

It’s not going to be easy and will actually require me going back to school, but I’m so excited. Really, truly excited. I will share more details about it in January, since I’m not quite ready yet. The plan is still pretty fresh and I need to hold onto it a little longer, but I have the start of my roadmap. I am beginning to set goals for myself and I know what I want to become and that’s really all I wanted for Christmas. That, my family and a simple Christmas tree.

  • Ashley

    This is perfect. I can’t wait to see your January post!

  • kellymitchem

    I love the top photo of the Christmas tree!

  • I’m looking forward to seeing what you’re up to as well :) Thank you for sharing so vulnerably your thoughts. I found you from the wiegands’ and I’m glad I did :) Headed to look around some more. ~Jenna

  • Renee Soriano

    So happy for you. Can’t wait for January to see what’s next on your new journey:)

  • So excited I found your space on The Wiegands! I live in Greenville, SC which isn’t too far away from you. I’m excited to see more of Charlotte through your blog! Merry Christmas!!

  • Shannon

    love the pic of your tree and this post! much love to you in all the new!!!!