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  • Writer's pictureJenn

Giving Up

When your life doesn't look like you thought it would

If you have ever thought:

"I never thought my marriage would be like this."

"I thought my family would be different."

"This isn't what I expected."

And feel disappointed, grief, loss, or despair?

This is for you.

Because I have been there.

And I prescribe giving up.

But first...

Have you seen those beautiful family pictures

Where everyone has adorable, coordinated outfits?

And they are all smiling?

A natural, perfect moment where everyone is laughing and genuinely delighted to just be together.

No one had just been arguing

Or complaining

Or refusing to do what the photographer was begging them to do....

We've never had those.

And this year I gave up.

I let go

Letting go can feel scary

because we often believe that letting go is giving up hope of being happy.

(And for the record....Hold on tight to the hope of being happy)

LET Go of comparing and believing that anything besides you will make you happy.

Comparing what you wish you had to what you actually have is stealing your joy.

  • EVERYONE and everything is 50% amazing and 50% not.

  • Imagining that things should be different takes a magnifying glass and focuses it on the bottom 50% until it is almost all you can see.

For instance, when you are focusing on your spouse looking at pornography you may miss the things you loved about him before you knew he was using.

How he looks at you

What a great dad he is

When you are focusing on how your kids don't remember Mother's Day or swear

You may miss how they returned a text or helped a friend

Choosing to focus on the good of what you have does not mean you become blind to the other 50%

It means that you have peace and joy as you decide how to protect yourself from the behavior of others,

You are not doing it from the place of helplessness and hopelessness.

You are doing it from a place of love and peace about reality.

You are no longer pretending.

The work ahead may involve clean pain like grief and sadness.

You may need to have some hard conversations.

You may not want to be happy about some of the things going on.

But you have the ability to be.

You can choose to preserve your peace.

This year for family pictures I told everyone to just wear whatever they wanted to wear.

I gave up trying to have outfits that match the living room.

I gave up hoping everyone would be happy to be there.

I gave up comparing our photos to other families

In favor of having pictures that truly represented US.

And this is what happened.

My boys turned it into feats of strength

One son wore a drift racing t-shirt and hat turned backwards

My husband wore a heavy metal hoodie

I didn't try to pretend that I hadn't had a really, really challenging week

Or that I set a boundary with one son earlier that he was upset about

That another son drove himself because he was upset at a request we made earlier

And forgot his brother behind and we all had to go back for him

I didn't apologize to the photographer for being different

I let go of controlling, managing, directing my family to create the image I had in my head

I just let go.

We had more fun doing pictures than we ever had

And I was filled with gratitude instead of disappointment.

I'm proud to hang this on my wall.

I am not saying it is easy

I'm saying it is possible

To let go of managing reality to fit the life or person you imagined

To create peace in your soul.

The crazy thing?

People change when they feel accepted

And this includes YOU.

When YOU can let go of the person you imagine you should be

And love up on the 50% of you that you wish was different


Keep hoping

And letting go.



Do you want to learn how to do the work of letting go trying to make others fit what you imagined? Of creating happiness and peace in your soul about what is?

Click the button below to schedule a call with me. Let's take an hour to talk about the steps you can take right away to change from living in disappointment to having peace.

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