INSPIRE Series: Fall Into Great Things (by Leslie Zimmerman)

     I’ve been sitting here for hours, trying to think of what to write. How do I inspire a group of women when I don’t lead an inspirational life? I can’t tell you to take the road less traveled. I can’t tell you to reach for the sky, because the sky’s the limit. I can’t tell you to quit your day job because that would terrify me. I don’t do those things so I don’t want to say you should either. That’d be advice I could NOT back up because I don’t choose the great things in my life. Instead, I fall into them.

     When making the choice to get married, I planned a marriage that was easy. “It’ll be easy, or it’ll be temporary.” Going into marriage, I gave it a limit. If I wasn’t feeling this happy by this time and these things hadn’t happened, we’d split things down the middle and head off in our directions. My husband and I are logical people. We know things can go wrong in a marriage and for some reason, we expected something like that to happen. Maybe it’s because both our families are divorced. As kids we were packed up and sent off to another house every couple days. Our divorced mothers and fathers were real and possible, and divorce didn’t make them bad people. We could be those people and we’d be okay.

      Instead, we fell into a marriage that has been difficult. We didn’t realize marriage makes you feel endless amounts of vulnerability. There’s something that changes with the realization that you’re tied together forever. There is something that changes when you realize marriage isn’t all honeymoons and happy family photos. Marriage is true friendship but it’s hard on your heart and your head. It is bringing words of hope to your partner when your own heart is full of doubt. It is being strong for your partner even when your knees are shaking. It is completing each other every single day, even when every fight is louder, more hurtful and more serious because you can’t block your partner's number and never speak to them again. Instead, you are stuck in that space called marriage rubbing two stones together trying to make fire. And trust me, you're going to have opposing opinions about how to go about making that fire, but that's marriage. It is meeting every fight with ten thousand moments of joy if you let yourself be vulnerable. If you let yourself fall because there is someone to catch you.

      I don't know. This post could be read as an attempt to inspire you to get married. It could probably be read as an attempt to inspire you to stay together for the kids, but that's so 2001. Instead, I want you to read this post and know I don’t lead an inspirational life. I don't know how to inspire you. I fall into the great things in my life because I let myself. If there's anything I could ever inspire you to do, it's to let yourself lose your footing and fall into a great thing. 

About the author:

Leslie is a wife, mother to an adoptive son who makes her world go round, and an undergraduate student at Michigan State University who dual majors in English Literature and Professional Writing. Her love for literature and her experience copyediting has forced her to reconsider graduating with her Bachelors in English this summer and she has now decided to remain a student for another year, raking in skills and experience in editing and publishing. With a 5-year-old heading into Kindergarten in August, a full-time student workload, and two immensely energetic dogs waiting at home, let us not even begin to wonder what Leslie plans to take on next in her attempt to drive herself crazy! And I attached a picture! Thanks for this opportunity!

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Praise be to the name of God for ever and ever; wisdom and power are his.