I’m sorry to CASEY because this one is long. You are allowed to not read it. I know you hate more than 3 sentences at a time.

I was thinking a bit yesterday, and I’ve realized I’ve learned a lot about myself in the last year. I’d say it’s been over the last 2 or 3 years, but in the last year especially, I’ve really become aware of some things. I have no reasoning behind blogging about this other than helping myself remember this. Definitely don’t take any of this as bragging, not that it’s anything people would brag about.

The biggest lesson I’ve learned about myself is that I am not one for taking the easy way out. Convenience is not usually a motivator for me. That can be cost, time, or effort, or other values. 

Here are some examples: FOOD – I feel strongly about certain foods my family consumes. Two things are meat and milk (we prefer organic and no hormones when possible). I know they cost more. I don’t care. That is a priority of ours, and we’ll stick to it. (And yes, I know I eat tons of other complete junk at times, but when I buy it for home, I have certain rules for myself.) People say when Cora is older and I need to save money that I will stop buying these things. They do not know me very well, because when people tell me stuff like that, it’s even more motivation to continue what I’m doing. On this note, you should read this book:Image

It is amazingly informational. It’s basically a textbook written by a nutritionist, and there’s something for everyone in it. You don’t have to be an organic food kind of person – that’s honestly not what it’s even about.

Another example came up when I had Cora. I had flirted with the idea of no medicine for her birth, but after people told me I was crazy, I was determined to do it! It would’ve been very convenient to knock my pain out, but I wanted to endure and persevere. I did it!

The same goes for cloth diapers. These fall under almost every category of difficulty – more effort, more time, more controversy/criticism – but they fall under even more positive categories for my family, so I’m sticking with them! The environment, saving money, the health benefits for Cora, not creating the demand for as much factory production/energy, etc. are things we like about using them. 

One more example is how I try to never shop at Wal-Mart. Yes, it’s convenient in multiple ways (can get everything in one place, cheaper), but I know enough about the company’s practices and effects that we, as a family, try to not support them. Again, money isn’t worth ditching our values. Before that comes across as judgemental, I understand that, if you’re seriously scraping to get by, THEN you don’t have a choice. We are fortunate enough to not be scraping, so I can choose to not support certain stores.

Another lesson I will say I’ve learned is that I’m freaking tough. I can do whatever I want to do, and I CAN get through it. It scares me to think ahead and wonder why I’ve learned this lesson, but either way, I know it’s true. My own physical body is tough (thanks, Cora!), and that plus God’s help is enough to get me through anything! Suck it, pain!

One more lesson, and I’ll stop here, is that I can get over some shyness. It’s impossible for 98% of the world to understand how awesome that is. I’ve battled being cripplingly shy my whole life. I cannot do anything in front of anyone without crying. I mean, if I’m in a group that just goes around a circle and says their name, I feel like I’m going to have a heart attack as my turn draws closer and closer. I now know that, with repetition, I can slowly overcome this a bit, at least. I have successfully been singing at church in front of people for a few months now, and it feels good to be free of a little of that fear! I know I’m not the best singer in the world or even CLOSE, but I’m glad I’m able to at least try and not cry when doing it these days.

I’m proud of myself! Thanks for reading.