Comparison Kills Wonder
Caveat #1 I'm totally going to start this blog like a speech you'd write for your high school English class so bear with me and enjoy the nostalgia.
Caveat #2 Motherhood. It's what consumes most of my thoughts these days and, inevitably, my writing. I realize, as a writer, this is not great for relating to my entire audience BUT I'm hoping you'll still find something to relate to here. Ok. Enough with the caveats. Here we go.
Wonder can be defined as: a feeling of surprise mingled with admiration, caused by something beautiful, unexpected, unfamiliar, or inexplicable.
.. what a cool word. Ok. Keep that definition in mind as you read.
Once upon a time I was scrolling through Instagram which then led to scrolling through Facebook, then a parenting app, then google.... who am I kidding, once upon a time? ..More like, once every half hour. Maybe you’re like me and one app leads to another that leads to another. Our access to info is astounding. One day, as I was doing this, and mind you, I'm in the middle of one of the most special and beautiful times of my life right now. I'm raising my miracle boy. It's too-much-for-words beautiful but all of a sudden, I'm struck with the reality that even though I'm experiencing one of the most wonder-filled seasons of my life and I'm living the feeling of surprise mingled with admiration, caused by something beautiful, unexpected, unfamiliar, or inexplicable, as I scroll through the plethora of apps, websites, etc., I'm, inch by inch, losing my wonder. I'm losing that feeling of surprise and admiration that comes when you experience something unexpected & unfamiliar. As I peer into the lives of others through Instagram or I read articles on Facebook or I read about peoples' experiences on parenting apps, I'm unintentionally comparing their journeys' to my own and not fully living in the brand new, awe-inspiring wonder of my own experience.
As I had that realization, I felt the Lords deep longing for me to experience the wonder that is MY journey in motherhood. I've never mothered before and that's really, really cool & special. It’s an opportunity for me to experience something new, challenging, fun & rewarding. And while it can sometimes be helpful to hear others' journeys, it is still THEIR journey, not mine.
We have this tendency to project others' experiences onto our own for a number of reasons. One being to limit the fear or anxiety we have about the unknown. We do it to make sense of our experiences. If so and so experienced that then that’s probably why I’m expericing this, etc. and obvisouly, this can be 100% accurate for some scenarios but the problem is when we compare the outcome of our experience with the outcome of others’ experiences then we can lose the wonder and surprise of living our own lives. Just as there is no single person like you or me on this planet of billions, there is no person that's going to have our experience. There may be elements that are the same but the overall experience will not compare to our own.
I feel the Lord urging me to experience my life, and motherhood with fresh eyes, fresh heart and mind, letting myself learn, grow, experience, try new things, in my own way, so that I may learn another facet of myself and who I am in this new season of life.
Maybe you're experiencing something brand new to you. Instead of projecting someone else's experience onto yours, listen to what the Father is calling you to experience in this. Approach this new season or journey with eyes wide with wonder. Experience, to the fullest. what this new thing really is as opposed to what it was for someone else. This is YOUR life. You get one chance to live it the way YOU'RE meant to.