I love drama. The televised kind. There is nothing quite like a truly well written show that not only entertains the mind, but engages the mind. We’ve been making our way through the TV series The West Wing around here for the last couple of years, and I get so sucked in to the grand plot following the eight years of a fictional American President in the White House.
We’re on the last season right now, where a new set of presidential candidates are duking it out for the title of President of the United States of America. The show has been following the cutthroat pace of the campaigns, and a word that keeps popping up is momentum.
The candidates need momentum to propel them forward in the race to election. One candidate in particular in the show has had to start from basically scratch and try to make his little tiny snowball of support become the mega-giant glacier needed to dominate in the national elections. He needs to get some momentum.
I can totally relate.
I have confessed to friends before: being in your 20’s is hard. You’re finishing up a career of schooling, trying to figure out what it is you are going to do with your life, who it is you are exactly. This decade of life is filled with uncertainty as you try to find your place in a career field, possibly look for a spouse and start a family, and generally start from scratch trying to build a life.
Really, it’s not just that the 20s are a hard decade, but that any period of major life transition is hard, and the 20s just happen to be a natural minefield of major life transitions.
In transitional seasons you’re trying to get up the momentum to keep the ball rolling. Keep life moving forward. You’re at the flat (and sometimes even slightly inclined) starting point where it takes a lot of effort, before gravity really kicks in to help.
For us, it has been what feels like a never ending saga trying to get up the momentum to pay off debt AND pay for the things growing families need. We’re close to finally paying off the hospital bills from our unexpected miscarriage and then unexpected c-section that occurred within a 12 month timeframe. We got one baby for the price of three in 2013- not a cheap venture, and one we certainly did not have the cash just lying around.
And looming over our heads has been our 14 year old (fully paid!) sedan that is quite literally falling apart piece by piece, and the knowledge that we will somehow need to replace it sooner rather than later.
And then there are things like someday owning a home for our kids to grow up in, and thoughts about how we’ll educate those kids (which won’t exactly be free, no matter how we slice it). And travel dreams, and things we don’t really need but it sure would be fun to have or try… someday…
It feels like we’re throwing a lot of energy in just trying to build up momentum. Just trying to build our base of resources and move forward. Just trying to get a wedge in behind this snowball and get it rolling down the mountainside.
Even as I type this, though, I can’t help but feel a little tinge of joy. I’m tired, I’m working hard, I’m being challenged. I’m sweaty, I’m grimy, and I’m in the heat of life. But boy does it feel good to be engaged and alive, to be working hard but not working without purpose. To be challenged, but not without attainable goals. To have unfinished business, but a home overflowing with love and thanks for how far we have already come.
I’m glad for my little patchwork life, for the amazing things we have seen God do in us and for us as we’ve forged ahead in this decade of life changes and major momentum building. He’s been faithful in countless instances, a reminder that instills more confidence with each new challenge we face.
And in the meantime, I’m learning to enjoy driving around that old tin can of a car with two carseats crammed in the backseat. I’m learning to enjoy making do with what we have in a basic apartment that we’re trying to make a home. I know we’ll look back with warmness at these hard, crazy years and be so glad we persevered through them with joy and thanksgiving for everything we have.
I’m so glad I get the privilege of building a life, inside and out.