This last week while I was packing in preparation to move, I happened upon a photograph of myself from 10 years ago.
My immediate thoughts were “Wow, I need to whiten my teeth and definitely lose weight. And I guess the dark circles under my eyes aren’t from lack of sleep. Maybe I’m just aging badly.” I stared at the picture a little more, longing for the wheels of time to be kinder.
It was then that my daughter, who just turned 5, came up to me and looked at the picture.
I was worried she wouldn’t recognize it as me because I had changed so much. She said “Oh, is this a picture of who you used to be?” I was surprised she would phrase it like that.
I almost corrected her- this was me when I was younger- but I didn’t. What she said began to sink in.
Ten years ago I had not yet…
- overcome my fear of speaking on the phone.
- flown in a plane.
- learned to be a straight A student.
- stopped having horrible acne (which I had forgotten was photoshopped out of the picture).
- served a mission for my church and learned to see others the way God sees them.
- experienced the thrill of meeting and marrying my husband, which was love at first sight.
- felt the joys and pains of motherhood which has made me more patient and loving (and crazy).
Heck, I hadn’t even tasted Cafe Rio’s sweet pork burritos! The last 10 years have changed me in so many positive ways and given me so many wonderful learning experiences.
My life was great when I took that picture, but my future was just so much better.
After I thought about it, I told my daughter “Yes, you are exactly right, this is a picture of who I used to be.”
Buckminster Fuller wrote “You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete.” And Sanhita Baruah said “it is not as much about who you used to be, as it is about who you choose to be.”
Thinking about positive change has made this new year more poignant for me. I have begun to ask myself, “How will you look back on this year? What will you have accomplished and experienced? Who will you have become?”
I challenge you to embrace change. Face the fears and reverse the bad habits that hold you back. Become the person you dream of being.
Make your past unrecognizable.
What’s something you want to be different in your life 10 years from now? Tell us in the comments!