Ever built an empire in your daydream? Mine consist of glitter, tons of glitter. Because shiny things have a special place in my heart. Just ask diamonds. They’ll tell you.
Empires are glamorous. They signify power & status. And as the days roll along, wiping toddler snot with my bare hands so he doesn’t wipe it all over his cheeks like a facial cleanser, I’ve been learning my heart is a deep well that longs for an empire.
An empire in the form of applause from others, a crowd to admire me, a significance and importance in the eyes of my friends, or in any eyes at all. Over the months, especially since becoming a mom, I’ve recognized a silly pattern. My heart is in this constant participation of a wrestling match. I’m wrestling to answer, truly answer, whether I let what I do define who I am or what I have define what I’m worth.
Because honestly, I didn’t attend NYU to become a stay-at-home mom. In fact, none of my classes taught me how to appropriately wipe a baby’s bottom which would’ve come in handy. I attended college to become someone who earned a paycheck. A paycheck that could pay for my cute NYC apartment with my cute NYC clothes and even a cute NYC dog that would be my best NYC accessory. And I’d take a cute NYC selfie, and post it on my cute Instagram, because life doesn’t exist unless you have proof in a photo thats posted on the Internet. (I hope you smell the sarcasm) Get the paycheck. Get the house. Get the clothes. Get the status. Get the fame. Get the value.
Guys, I think I’ve spent 80 percent of my life defining who I am with what I did. Got good grades- I was smart. Got into college- I was on the track of success. And success to me was being able to afford a lifestyle of glamour, status & luxuries. To build my glitter empire. That was my end goal.
And now I’m a mama to a sweet little boy who has ever so strongly flipped my life upside down. I’m married to a gentleman that reminds me beauty is within the heart. I’ve learned the glamour fades. Riches are fleeting. Brand names don’t satisfy the longing of recognition, value or acceptance. Even if I lived in my glitter empire, with recognition, fame & a giant farmhouse decorated by the phenomenal Joanna Gaines. With shiplap walls, a giant sink & white subway tiles in my spacious open concept kitchen. (Where my Fixer Upper fans at!?) Those are all great things to have, and honestly I hope one day I can have that dang shiplap goodness in my Brooklyn apartment. (Follow this link if you’re wondering what in the world is shiplap) But they will never satisfy my deep longing for significance. And so I’ve been learning to steady my eyes on God’s sweet grace.
Grace isn’t a prayer whispered before swallowing dinner. But its the true story of a loving God extending restoration to a broken me. It’s unconditional love in the form of the cross. It’s a story of reconciliation for anyone who believes. It’s meeting me in my mess of messes. It’s not asking me to be perfect or a good person, it’s asking me to sit, believe & wait on a good God to restore all things.
And that’s where I am today. In a wrestling match of glitter empires & toddler snots. Letting myself breathe in the truths of God. That my value is not in a job title. It’s not in a paycheck. It’s not in my mom status or lack of fame. It’s not in the state of my kitchen or decorations in my home. & It’ll certainly not be found in building an empire or wiping snot.
My value is simply in Jesus. Accepted. Restored. New. Enough.
And that makes all the difference.
Some of my favorite shots from this past month
Elaine IovinoApril 23, 2016 at 10:40 am
Hi Heather. You are a mighty woman of God and He has given you great gifts which include your husband and children and more to come.
I am so proud you He has shown you your worth and will continue to unholy many many more of your talents.
Miss and love you all.
HeatherApril 23, 2016 at 11:47 am
Thank you so much Elaine <3 That means a lot to me. We miss & love you!!
Shirley SunflowersApril 23, 2016 at 12:12 pm
Not ‘was smart’, you still are!!! It sounds like being a parent has its own set of challenges and rewards as with any route we decide to take in life(: I really admire all that you do and represent for your family. You know, I share your posts with my partner because I want us to have what you have. I miss you, Heather!
HeatherApril 25, 2016 at 8:45 am
Shirley!!!! Thank you so much for this comment. You are so sweet I almost teared up. Maybe it’s the pregnancy hormones hehe. I would love to hang out with you and your partner one day 😁 We can catch up and exchange stories ! I wish you all the best and seriously would love to set a date to catch up !!! ❤️ Thank you again for your encouragement it was so life giving !
Shirley SunflowersApril 29, 2016 at 9:57 am
Ah! I would loveeeeeeeeeeee to! I’ll message you & we’ll get that set up (:
NinaApril 23, 2016 at 1:32 pm
I can definitely relate to wanting glamour or status to define me. Great post, thank you for sharing!
HeatherApril 25, 2016 at 8:46 am
Hi there Nina ! Thanks so much for reading and commenting ❤️ Glad you enjoyed the read!
Christina ZepedaApril 23, 2016 at 4:10 pm
Love the pictures, new hobby ? I see talent.
I read this and thought oh wow I can so relate. I went to FIT had dreams of pursuing a career in home products. In which I did get my feet wet which felt good but now feels like a tease.
Now I’m a stay at home mom with a one year old,planning some more children ,what junior high my 9 yr old will be going to and a house that I really want.
I visited old coworkers yesterday and got a read bad itch of missing work. Reading this was funny because it just how I been
Feeling. Bam you said it perfect!!!!!
“That my value is not in a job title. It’s not in a paycheck. It’s not in my mom status or lack of fame. It’s not in the state of my kitchen or decorations in my home. & It’ll certainly not be found in building an empire or wiping snot.
My value is simply in Jesus. Accepted. Restored. New. Enough.”
HeatherApril 25, 2016 at 8:51 am
Yessss! Thank you Christina ❤️ I had no idea you went to FIT! I think it’s so cool how God can use the same talents and passions we have back at home to set the atmosphere for our family to grow and flourish. So glad these words spoke to you ❤️ Tons of hugs and kisses to you and the fam ❤️
JoanApril 26, 2016 at 2:36 pm
This was so encouraging, thanks for sharing your heart Heather.
Laura AbreuJune 10, 2016 at 11:31 am
This was so encouraging to read. Lately I too have been battling with pushing against what society and others think should define me- looks, the way my hair is done, weight, whether or not my room is tidy. None of it matters! Because, as you said, my only definition is in being a child of God. Thank you for that reminder.
PebblesJuly 21, 2016 at 7:36 pm
I love this Heather for so many different reasons. Such a sense of calm and enlightenment and reading this. You’re inspiring! We’ll have our dyi shiplap and maybe even a farm white sink one day. Maybe not and that’s ok. Xoxo