Dare to Live Fully
by Julianna Zobrist
As it appeared in July 2011 issue of GoodLiving Magazine.
One of the most common questions I receive as the wife of a professional baseball player, recording artist/performer, mother of a two year old and now a six-month pregnant woman is, “How do you balance everything in your life?” My typical response with a smile and a short laugh, is “Let me know if you figure out what that means!”
Balance is not a word frequently used in our household. Our schedule is constantly changing, we know Southwest flight attendants by name and our son, Zion, often says, “We’re home!” when we pull up to a hotel.
Growing up in a family of eight where my father was a pastor and my mom cooked every meal, I was used to the comfort of routine and consistency. So the crazy lifestyle Ben and I have is a big change for me. We live in Tennessee for four months out of the year during the baseball off-season; Port Charlotte, Florida for a month and a half during spring training; and then in Tampa Bay for the regular season. Out of the six baseball months, we are on the road for half of them.
On top of the baseball world, I am a musician. I write all of my own music, fly to Nashville to record, and often perform at festivals, churches and schools throughout the year.
Needless to say, there aren’t very many home-cooked meals coming from this mama! At first, the ugly little monster of “comparison” kept me from just letting go and loving our life. I was always trying to fit us into what I thought was the good, American, even “Christian” way of living. But the more I compared, the more bitter and discontent I became.
I soon found out that I can spend these years trying to obtain “balance” to have a very normal, predictable life with one home, no traveling and home-cooked meals every night, or I can spend these years not only being content, but loving the life God has entrusted our family with and enjoying it! The truth is that for many, a life of routine works beautifully and I am sometimes jealous of that! But that wasn’t the life God handed my family. So instead of trying to make it into what I thought it should be, I dared myself to live fully right where I am!
I recently attended a funeral, and as heartbreaking as it is to lose someone you love, I think God uses those moments to graciously give us a dose of perspective. One day this life will be over…what did I spend it doing? What kind of legacy will I leave with my family and friends and people that I randomly meet at a baseball game or one of my shows?
I pray that my children aren’t left only being able to say that their Mom loved them and provided for them. But that they saw that God so radically permeated me that I lived this life fearlessly and was not a slave to what others said was the way to live. I want to live a life that loves the Gospel of Christ, a life that teaches my children how to be bold. I want to live a life where I don’t expect me to be perfect, but one that holds onto the Grace and Forgiveness and Redemption given to me. I want to live a life that shows my daughter how to love her husband like they are newlyweds forever and a life that seizes the crazy moments and makes them fun. I want to live a life that shows my children and others watching, how to live fully…not simply how to be balanced.