• Kristina Mulligan

What You’re Capable of, It Matters

I’ve found myself stuck in a mindset recently – approaching thirty and looking around at my life wondering, “Is this what I dreamed?” I always thought I’d be better than this. Of course, I’ve come to terms with the fact that my original expectations of a white picket fence and a house full of kids has morphed into a brightly technicolored, fufilling life as a family of three. But, is this life “whatever I put my mind to?” Would my younger self be proud?

When we’re little, we’re taught that we can do anything. If we can dream it, we can do it. You want to be a rockstar? Consider the stage yours. A mom of ten children (all babies)? Fill your van with car seats. A unicorn jockey? If you can dream it, you can achieve it.

We want to build confidence. We really believe our kids can do anything and we would never want to crush their hearts and dreams. At what point, though, do we add honesty into the equation? Because sometimes, circumstances can place limits.

I could not afford the best school for my college degree. I’ve had to make choices between career and family. I might not have enough kids to make a baseball team. A five-bedroom farmhouse in the country and summer vacations to the beach may be out of reach. Childhood doesn’t understand adulthood, and it shouldn’t, so my life now looks far different than I thought it would. Does that make me a disappointment?

Having a child with a disability has taught me so much about life, and I know that sounds cliché, but the perspective that I have is so much grander than it was before. At the end of the day, I am proud of choices made with a good, loving heart. I value happiness over titles and what's included on a resume. The size of your home does not impress me as much as your treatment of others.

I do believe that Flynn can reach for the stars, push limits, and make an impact on the world – with my whole soul and being, I know this to be true; but success is not measured by accomplishments, career, or financial worth. Whatever he is capable of is enough.

I am not interested in crushing dreams, breaking hearts, or even bringing a daydreamer back down to Earth, but I find so much power in a person's worth simply being placed on who they are, not their societal perception. Because there is so much in life that a person is up against and sometimes dreams must shift, but that is not failure.

And it’s taken all of this to be able to give myself, all versions of it, just a little bit of grace. Whatever your capabilities are, you are enough.

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