"When life is too easy for us, we must beware or we may not be ready to meet the blows which sooner or later come to everyone, rich or poor."
I really like to write, but lately it seems like every time I sit down with the intention of updating this thing I get so caught up in a torrent of thoughts that I don't even know where to begin. What do I say? What don't I say? How do I feel about this, that and the other? I don't even know myself sometimes so forgive the fact that this may be a random, rambling, stream-of-conscious-thought post. I'm just going to take what comes out and run with it.
I like the above quote a lot, because I think it neatly defines the past year of my life. Up until a year ago I had lead one of the cushiest, easiest, more perfect lives ever. Really. Nothing even remotely "bad" had ever happened to me. Which basically means that the past year completely blindsided me. There have been some good times for sure, but this has also easily been the worst year of my life in more ways than one.
That said, in a weird and sick sort of way, I think I will eventually end up looking back and being incredibly thankful for at least some of the events of the past year. Some things I could have happily lived another 80 years without having happen mind you...but I also know that I've learned more about myself and about people and about Jesus in the past twelve-ish months than in the other 23 years of my life combined. It's almost as though I had to fall flat on my face in order to get it through my thick head that unfortunately, the world does not in fact, revolve around me.
I think I am not at all the same person I was a year ago. That Lauren was a little hard, a little cold, a little too close-minded for her own good. She didn't like getting too "emotional" with people and she certainly didn't like hugs. This new Lauren has learned that at some point we are all going to have our struggles, that life is just downright unpredictable and by golly, I'll hug anyone coming or going. And I've realized that we can say whatever we want--but none of us know exactly how we will react to something until it happens to us. I have cried more, cursed more and yelled at God more than I ever have in my life. But on the flip side, I've also prayed more, and loved more and had more compassion for other people than I ever have before either. For all the bad that has happened to me this year, I feel as though I've become more open-minded and tender-hearted towards others than I thought was possible for me. Never again will I judge someone or think harshly of someone for whatever circumstances in life they are going through because my gosh, who am I to judge anyone?