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Birthday Blues: 25, 35, and the Time in Between

My Granddad & Me

My Granddad & Me

I remember my 25th birthday like it was yesterday.  I was living in El Paso, TX with my granddad and studying to get my MBA. My parents sent roses to the teaching assistant’s office, and I was grateful. (Who isn’t grateful to get roses at work?!)

But I also think I had a case of birthday blues.

It felt like I was behind.

Because I had this grand plan: I was going to meet my husband at 24, get married at 26, and have a kid at 28. The thing is, none of that had happened.

A Pity Party

And I threw myself quite the pity party in honor of my birthday.

But it wasn’t just the lack of a relationship that I was sad about, it seriously felt like NOTHING was going my way.  The past few years had been filled with disappointment :

  •  My career was non-existent.
  •  I’d witnessed two of my cousins go through terrible divorces.
  • And I could not shake the feeling that I was being left behind in life.

Not to mention, that I had been swindled out of $8,000 dollars and was trying to navigate the legal system. Twenty-five was supposed to be a milestone! A time to celebrate all that I’d accomplished,  but I couldn’t see that I had anything to celebrate.

Not My Will, But Yours

On top of that, the move to El Paso was against my will. Everything that I knew and loved was in Nashville.

But late in 2005, I felt the voice of God. And I could not shake the feeling that He wanted me to move. Every time, I got the feeling…I started crying. After months of fighting it, I sat down to talk with my parents and they agreed that it was probably the right thing to do.

So, I sold my town home. Packed my furniture into my parents attic, and loaded everything I could into my little Camry. My dad helped me make the twenty-four hour drive, and I must’ve cried halfway there.

Seven months later, I celebrated my 25th birthday.

The Launching Pad

Looking back ten years, I have a bit more perspective. And I can see that the move in January of 2006 set the stage for a lot of other things. But what if I decided that I didn’t want to move?

  • I wouldn’t have met Morris
  • I wouldn’t have interviewed for a job in D.C. in New Mexico (that’s another long story)
  • I wouldn’t have gotten the chance to intern at the Smithsonian
  • Maybe I wouldn’t have gotten the chance to move to D.C.
  • Maybe I wouldn’t have met all of you that I consider my dearest friends
  • And maybe I wouldn’t even be writing.

Staring Down 35th Birthday

I’ll be 35 in August of this year.

Looking back over the past ten years, I am nothing short of amazed at what God has done…the people He’s placed in my life, the doors that He’s opened, and the path that He is laying out before me.

Our Time Line v. His

But nothing happened according to my time line.

At 25, I was nowhere near where I thought I should be. But I was exactly where God wanted me to be…in the middle of the desert.

Sister, it doesn’t matter whether we are 25, 35, 45, or 55…as long as we are where God says we’re supposed to be. We are right on time.

Does God Want You to Move in 2016?

So as we celebrate the beginning of 2016, I want to encourage to seek God on moves/decisions He wants you to make THIS year.

The Israelites had to move out of Egypt to get to the Promised Land. And it may not be a physical move that the Lord has laid on your heart, but a move for something new He wants to do in your life.

Be strong and courageous. Move.

Nothing else matters, if we are not in the center of His will.

Question: What hard moves/decisions have you made that led to an awesome outcome MANY years later? 

Looking forward to all that God is going to do this year! Love, Simone

14 Comments

  1. Love this, Simone! So happy to see what God has done in the last 10 years since you said Yes to that first move! 🙂 I totally had a similar timeline. I got married really early (22!) but I planned to be DONE having children by the time I was 30 (and I wanted at least 2, maybe 3 kids). I turn 30 this year, and I’m not pregnant that I know of–but I’ve learned SO MUCH about God’s timeline, and I can say genuinely that it really is GOOD! 🙂
    Laura C. Brandenburg recently posted…That Moment of ChoiceMy Profile

    • Simone

      January 14, 2016 at 11:11 pm

      Amen to that, Laura! Amen to that. I LOVED reading the story of your timeline. And I got a kick out of seeing we both planned to be finished with child bearing by 30. Clearly, the Good Lord has something else in mind:-). Isn’t it amazing, though, to look back (even if we don’t have what we planned) to see his goodness shown over AND over again? I agree with you. His timeline is SO good.

  2. Thanks for sharing! I loved hearing how God has moved in your life. What a needed message about God’s timing.

    • Simone

      January 17, 2016 at 4:24 am

      Hey Monica! All I can say is praise God! I am so grateful you were encouraged by this message about God’s timing. It’s not always easy. But I PROMISE you it IS the best. Thanks of stopping by!

  3. Excellent blog Simone! Thanks for the wisdom and insight being provided through your blogs. As i was reading , i thought about a scene from the movie When Harry Met Sally. She was crying her eyes out and made the statement, ” i am going to be 40…some day! She was 32 at the time.

    If we get our timing in agreement with His timing, it will all work out for the best.

    Enjoy 2016 beautiful.

    • Simone

      January 17, 2016 at 4:30 am

      Nan! Thanks so much, Sis. I am so grateful the Lord can use all my messes to encourage. It’s all Him.
      I was reading a book today and it ALSO mentioned When Harry Met Sally! But I forgot all about that scene, you described. Maaaahn, I can totally see myself in that scene. What you said is THE key–>>We must get our timing in line with His timing.

      That is everything. Happy 2016, Nan. Love you!

  4. You are preaching to the choir sister!!! I felt like I was delayed in ALL of my accomplishments in life! I was trying to achieve the American Dream and did not know that it did not exist! But God in His goodness set out to bring out my BEST. That meant a lot of pruning and waiting. Im still waiting but atleast now I have more understanding as to why. I finally see He is for our good and we are storing up eternal riches by trusting Him. The desires we have in this life He uses to keep directing us to Him. Only He satisfies. Tx for sharing ur story!!! I would LOVE to get that book also!

    • Simone

      January 17, 2016 at 4:54 am

      Bwhahaha! I got a kick out of reading your comment, Nicole. You are not alone. You are ABSOLUTELY not alone.
      Isn’t it interesting how sometimes we have a plan, and we just want God to go along with it?! But in His mercy and GRACE…He’s just like “actually I have something waaaay BIGGER and waaaay BETTER.”

      I see that in your story, Sis. The pruning and the waiting is less than comfortable…but the way God is using your book “How to Overcome Heartbreak” (shameless plug) and opening up ministry opportunities. You are being so available to Him. And He cleared your schedule for a time. He’s taking what was an incredibly painful and blessing so many through you. I CANNOT wait to see what He continues to do with your story, and I’m grateful that He’s brining understanding and clarity. Y

      Yes! This right here–>> He is for our good and we are storing up eternal riches by trusting Him. The desires we have in this life He uses to keep directing us to Him. It reminds me of 2 Corinthians 4:17 our light affliction worketh toward the eternal weight of Glory…

      And the book is yours! I’m going to email you in two shakes.

  5. What a testament to the fact that we really do need to trust what God is telling us even when we don’t understand at the moment! I had a very strong desire to move to California and I didn’t understand why. Looking back, it was a period of extreme learning and growth in my life. And plus, I met my husband during this time! I think that if I didn’t listen to that voice that was telling me to move across the country, my life would have been drastically different today.

    • Simone

      January 21, 2016 at 9:58 pm

      Hey Quanie! I LOVED reading your story of moving to California. Thank you so much for sharing.
      And you met your husband after a big move too?! Whoa. I didn’t realize we had that in common. That time in El Paso was the same for me: such a period of learning and growth. And I don’t even want to think about where I would be if I chose to ‘do my own thing.’

      You hit the nail on the head with this–>>Trust what God is telling us even when we don’t understand at the moment. Amen to that, Quanie. Amen to that. Thank you for stopping by!

  6. Simone,

    Congratulations on completing your novel, and for all the many accomplishments over your lifetime. We all experience times when we are unsure and don’t know which way to turn, but Praise God for His Grace. His blessings are always right on time.

    God has blessed you immensely – not only in the last 10 years – but throughout your life. He blessed me by bringing you into my life! Onward, upward, my friend!

    • Simone

      January 25, 2016 at 8:15 pm

      Shelli!

      Thank you SO much, Friend. I can’t help but feel a huge sense of relief. The road to publishing is still long, but I’m grateful to be at this milestone. You hit the nail on the head when you said His Grace. It has been so present and tangible through this process. And you are TOTALLY right he’s blessed me immensely through out my life, not JUST the last ten years.

      I feel the same way, Shelli. I feel the same way. He blessed ME when you came into my life. I was really at a transitional phase and seeking God on what to do about my career. I can’t really explain what your constant encouragement means to me. Just thank you. Love you lots, Simone

  7. Nice post lady!!! I can totally relate! I JUST recently got out of the season of feeling unaccomplished! There were so many things that I said I wanted and thank God he knows best! I’m happy that he didn’t give what I wanted when I said I wanted because it would have been a hot mess!!! Lol thanks for sharing this post !

    • Simone

      January 29, 2016 at 5:26 pm

      Denise! Thanks for stopping by, Sis. I was just telling a friend had Morris married the 2005 version of me…it would have been all bad. I was a mess and didn’t even know it, Chile! Isn’t it awesome that our God knows best?!

      I am SO grateful that you are out of the season of feeling unaccomplished. Because sometimes we can’t even see what God is doing in and through us. And it takes time (hopefully, not ten years!) to look back and see what God was doing.

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