In honor of my birthday this past week, I bring you 10 things I learned when I was 37…
1. I am more resilient and stronger than I realized.
I faced a lot of fears this past year, including going to India for the first time and getting Delhi Belly all alone in a hotel room for 36 hours — and I survived and am stronger for it! Plus, I went back to India a few months later!
Read all about our second India trip here.
2. I love podcasting — especially with Jesse as the co-host!
About a year ago, we launched The Crystal Paine Show. I have loved learning this new communication medium and getting to have so many of you on the journey with me!
The best part has been getting to do the podcast with Jesse as my co-host. We have a lot of fun putting the shows together each week for you all (and THANK YOU to each and every one of you who tune in and have sent such kind emails and constructive feedback!)
(Also, marriage to my best friend just gets better and better!)
3. My 3 older kids might not need me physically like they used to, but they want to spend as much time with me as they can.
Regular dates, checking in, just hanging out, being available whenever they want to talk, and stepping into their world are the best ways to foster good communication.
(By the way, Jesse and I did a podcast episode on this, but please note that the first 20+ minutes are us recounting our trip to Yellowstone and the Grand Tetons. A few people really complained about the long intro on this episode, so if you just want the part about communication, just skip ahead to 23:41 to listen to us talk about communication with our kids.)
4. The best way to get over your fear of having a car accident is to get in the car and drive again — even though it really scares you.
I was in a pretty significant car accident in December and I honestly didn’t want to drive again after it. But I made myself get back in the car and drive the next day… because I knew the longer I waited, the harder it would be. It took me weeks to not feel anxious when I was behind the wheel, but the more I got in the car and drove, the easier it got.
5. Don’t settle for living with pain if the initial doctor’s reports say nothing is wrong.
It took going to a specialist and an MRI to discover my hand was broken after the accident. I’m so grateful that after 6 weeks in a cast, it is fully healed!
6. I love opening up our home.
37 was the year I madly fell in love with hospitality — we hosted hundreds of people this past year and it’s been such a joy (something I never dreamed I would say!)
7. I really love National Parks and now want to visit all of them.
I read Dear Bob and Sue earlier this year and it inspired me to want to visit all the U.S. National Parks. Then, we got to visit Yellowstone and Grand Tetons and it confirmed that desire! Now we’re looking for any opportunity to visit another National Park!
8. Jesse and I make a great remodeling team.
Okay, not the actual remodeling part, but we had so much fun planning and picking all the colors and details for our first remodeling project — our bathroom!
9. I am passionate about foster care.
Getting licensed to be foster parents took up hours and hours and hours of this past year and our journey is only beginning. We can’t wait to see what the future holds as we trust God one step at a time in this.
10. God isn’t limited by doctor’s reports that say “impossible.”
Case in point: my 10-week pregnant belly. Also, being pregnant with three older kids instead of being pregnant with a toddler and preschooler (like 10 years ago when I did this the last time!) is a completely different experience!
What’s something YOU learned this past year? I’d love to hear. Share it in the comments!