when life doesn't turn out the way you thought it would

I think most people have somewhat of an idea of how they want their life to turn out. We make plans and pray and hope and dream...and sometimes, it comes true! And it's wonderful when it does. I remember growing up and going through high school, college, and even grad school - life was pretty much predictable. Everything that I planned on happening happened. I got into the schools I applied for, I married the man of my dreams, we got the perfect apartment that we were hoping for... We even got the exact dog that I wanted to be ours. In my mind I was winning!

After grad school Alex and I dreamed of church planting. We were presented with an opportunity we couldn't refuse and jumped on it. And we began to dream of how the rest of our life together would look. We envisioned city living, regular trips to the farmers market, mountain hiking, snowy winters, frequent trips to the dog park... We were so excited and ready to live out our dreams.

But I couldn't predict how things would actually turn out. I couldn't predict the homesickness, the loneliness, the postpartum depression. I couldn't predict the intense fights Alex and I would have. I couldn't predict having a falling out with our good friends and the feelings of bitterness and betrayal that would take over my heart.

And so...we left. We left it all behind - the city we had grown to love and the church we had committed to planting. All of a sudden life wasn't turning out how I thought it would. And that kinda sucks. I mean, don't get me wrong, I love our life here in Miami. I can't imagine being anywhere else because we have been so blessed. We've grown a lot, spent lots of time with family, and just...breathed. I think I needed it. For my own mental health, I needed this. 

But that doesn't mean I don't feel a little ache inside. Because life really is SO different than how I thought it would be - and that can be difficult to reconcile, especially for someone like me who is so used to getting her way (spoiled!). But there's a lesson in all of this. I'm not 100% sure what it is but I think it has something to do with God being in control and His ways being better than my ways. Also...who knows what the future holds?! Something about knocking on 30s door makes me feel old but I'm really not. Lord willing I have a lot of life left to live; and if the past three years are any indication, life is unpredictable. You never know where you'll end up.