Are you happy at the moment?

Happy? Yes, but more importantly I am grateful for where and who I am in this moment.

If you could go back and say anything to your 16 year old self now – what would it be?

“This too shall pass.” At 16 I was clinically depressed, suicidal, and acting out. I was certain that everyone I loved was better off without me. I would love to be able to go back tell the younger me that help is on the way and a better life is coming.

What’s the most important thing you’ve learned this year?

This year I really began to not only believe but to implement that sometimes you have to let go to grow. I am a bit of a control freak (ok, I am a complete control freak) but I am starting to realize that not only can I not control everything but that I don’t even WANT to!

What do you most want to achieve in the next 12 months?

Better health. I am overweight and am beginning to see the ramifications in my health. I want to be here to see my son grow to adulthood so I need to get to work!

What’s your secret to happiness?

Stop trying to be happy! I began to feel better about life in general when I stopped focusing on happiness as a goal and started focusing on simply being grateful for the many gifts I already have. It was such a realization for me to look around and see how many blessings I had already been the recipient of!

What one ritual or practice keeps you grounded?

Girl time with my best friend of 26 years. We talk or text every day and get together at least once a week to grab a bite or go shopping. Taking that time to be with the person who has known me and can call me on my BS helps me to be a better wife and mother. She reminds me who I am even when it feels like I am so stressed I don’t recognize myself!

What’s your biggest regret?

I know it’s a cliché but I don’t believe in having regrets. Change any one thing in my past and I may not be where I am today. And where I am today is better than anything I could have imagined as that 16 year old girl.

What’s the most important lesson you’ve taught your kid(s)?

I hope that I am teaching him kindness. If at the end of my life, I have raised a kind and compassionate human being then my work will be done.

What bad habit would you most like to change about yourself?

Laziness! In my secret dream life I am a runner. One of those women you see running through town with their ipods, looking focused and skinny. In reality I am a chubby couch potato who would rather read or watch old episodes of West Wing than ever break a sweat.

Aside from motherhood and marriage what are you most proud of in your life?

That I am here! When I was 16, I was hospitalized after multiple suicide attempts. The thought of ever being a wife and mother or having a career I adore seemed inconceivable. But with the support of my family and friends as well as expert medical care, I persevered, healed and moved past it.

When were you happiest?

October 14, 2004. That is the day our son arrived in the United States from Korea. Everyone says that motherhood changes you but I like to believe my entire life was spent preparing me for that moment. I didn’t change, I simply became the woman I was always meant to be, Ryan’s Mom.

What ten words best describe you?

Mama, partner, friend, funny, bubbly, caring, dramatic, articulate, goofy, and (I hope)… kind.


Sara Varney juggles being the Editor of PassPorter News, Co-Host of the PassPorter Moms Podcast, a travel planner for MEI & Mouse Fan Travel, Mom to her incredible 8-year old son and Wife to her husband of almost 15 years.  She may look familiar from her Good Enough Mother guest posting: Want To Work In Your Pajamas?  When she’s not at her computer, she’s probably reading or sleeping. Or pretending to read while she sleeps.