Photos by KSTU Photography
Happy Friday, fam!
I wanted to make today’s post a bit different to show that not everything in life is exactly how it appears on social media. Our trip to New York City did not go quite as planned, and instead of just showing the cute photos my friend Katie captured during one of the few times I made it out of the hotel, and making our trip seem lighthearted and ‘perfect,’ I thought I’d give you a more honest/realistic glimpse into how things really went. I will say that I typically would only share the positive aspects of this trip/anything day-to-day, as I am sooo self conscious about being perceived as negative, or complaining too much. However, with all of the comparison on social media, due to only seeing people’s best moments, and planned out photoshoots (which there is NOTHING wrong with in my opinion – we’re not about to go airing all our dirty laundry for the world to see, amiright?!), I wanted to offer my own not-so-perfect scenario as a reminder that we ALL have battles we’re fighting, bad days, difficult seasons, heartache, etc. No matter how pretty, wealthy, loved, or perfect you may perceive someone’s life as being, Every. Single. Person. experiences their own trials. Please don’t forget that, next time you’re scrolling through Instagram or Facebook or Pinterest. Also note that many of our blogs, much like any sort of entertainment (i.e. television, movies, books, etc) were created as such – entertainment. They are a less-than-perfect/less-than-realistic look into each of our lives. They are thoughtfully planned, and many of us spend much more than 40+ hours a week planning, shooting, styling & editing, in order to create the beautiful ‘effortless’ looking content you see. You see our beautiful clothes, cleaned-up homes, our families smiling, but you do not see the days we are so tired we cry for an hour straight, the times we are arguing with our spouses, the days our babies are sick, the times we ourselves do not feel ‘good enough’ because we, too, have believed the lies that comparison can feed to us. The list goes on.
I really wasn’t expecting this intro to be so long! But I prayed specifically before writing a single word of this post that God would speak through me and give me the words that even just one person needed to hear. So I hope that some of you can be reminded today that no matter what stage of life you are in, no matter how much money you have, how skinny, how single, how broken you are, you are not alone. There is a God that walks through all of it with us, and if there is anything I’ve learned through each season of my life, He truly IS with us always, and is ALWAYS working in our favor. Our blessing may not always come in our time, or look the way we would expect, but it will always come.
“God proves to be good to the man who passionately waits, to the woman who diligently seeks. It’s a good thing to quietly hope, quietly hope for help from God. It’s a good thing to stick it out through the hard times.” Lamentations 3:25-27 MSG
Ok now for our trip ?
So about a month ago I received an email inviting me to 3 New York Fashion week shows. I was SO excited I started crying. I couldn’t believe that all of my hard work (that a lot of times feels so insignificant compared to where many of my friends are – LIES) was actually noticed. I was really really proud of myself! I called Christian to tell him and he said we 100% had to go. We booked our trip using hotel points & airline miles (yay for free travel!), and decided we’d leave Shiloh at home with our parents because a busy/sassy 1 year old + 2 cross country flights = NO THANKS!!
Fast forward to last week. Shiloh started getting pretty sick the day before we were scheduled to leave. Of course, right?! It was a longgg exhausting day and my poor girl definitely wasn’t herself. Next day, her cough sounded much worse, so I ended up taking her to urgent care just a few hours before Christian & I were supposed to leave for the airport. Turns out she had an ear infection on top of a nasty cold. I’m just soooo grateful that it wasn’t the flu!! We got her an antibiotic and left for the airport that evening. I had a panic attack before we left the house, and in the car on the way to the airport. Attacks..My usual, chest tightening, shortness of breath, crying, dizziness. In the past I would give in whenever those came on, and had Christian turn the car around and cancel the trip. But now I remind myself that there is an enemy who is very much at work in the world, and those lies/bad feelings are direct attacks from him – NOT God. I’m sure this sounds crazy to some of you, it honestly did to me too at first ?. But as I grow more and more in my faith, I see how real these things are.
I calmed myself down and was fine until we got off our first flight (we had to connect in San Fransisco). Right before boarding our 2nd flight, I had another panic attack. I really couldn’t breathe and felt like I was going to faint. I’m also terrified of flying so that definitely wasn’t helping. That time I actually told Christian we need to cancel the trip and go home. I just couldn’t do it. I sat down to get myself together and actually ended up feeling much better. We boarded the plane and headed to NYC.
That was my last bit of panic, as I decided something amazing was supposed to happen on/from this trip and the enemy knew it. He really did not want me to go and was taking every hit he could.
By the time we made it to our hotel the next morning, I was SO sick. I had gotten whatever cold Shiloh had, and literally could do nothing but lay in bed. This post is already so long, so I’m not gonna go too into detail on each day of the trip, but I ended up missing the only 3 fashion shows I had been invited to, as well as a couple of other fun events with some other girlfriends who were in town. I was SO mad. So frustrated. I felt so defeated because I was physically too weak to fight my way out of the hotel. I managed to make it to our hotel jacuzzi, to dinner with our friends, to a little bday surprise for C, and to take photos with Katie. And the day we left we got to stop by the Plaza to buy Shiloh some Eloise gifts (SO fun!). I’m still so grateful for the trip, and just getting to spend some one-on-one time with Christian, even under the circumstances. We still enjoyed ourselves and don’t regret the trip at all. I don’t feel like it was a waste and am so glad we went. If anything, I proved to myself that I could fight off the panic that I normally would have let consume me, and that leaving Shiloh really wasn’t as impossible as I had imagined. She really enjoyed her time with her grandparents, so that really put my mind at ease.
I know that our trip didn’t go nearly the way we were expecting it to, and that’s ok. I believe that God wanted to use this experience for His good, and to encourage someone today. On a similar note, do you have any favorite verses you turn to when you are feeling anxious or overwhelmed? I’d love to know! xoxo