When I started out on this three part journey I had no idea what Part 3 would entail. I just knew that all good blogs have one (lol ☺). Not that this alone makes a good blog…
But the other night it hit me like a brick. I knew what I’d be writing.
Life from a Thinker’s perspective.
Last week my oldest had a stomach bug. My youngest got Hand, Foot, and Mouth disease. My 3 year-old began to complain of a stomachache. My world of perfect health was being rocked…. in the same way that my one year-old loves to rock babies in their carseats… with really good intentions, love, and a LOT of turbulence.
Even though their illnesses were really small compared to the possibilities of disease out there, it was enough to shock me back to my senses. I could have let the feelings overwhelm me and become an over-protective, over-antibacterializing, over-everything kind of person. Instead, I sat back and reflected on these feelings and found the cause.
I take my family’s health for granted.
Not every day.
But on many.
How easily I assume that we will all stay well and be long-living if A. B. and C. are in place. We eat healthily. Drink healthily. Live healthily. We’ve got it covered, right? But even this is not truly in our control. I’ve known super active and healthy people to die on the spot of aneurisms. Or heart attacks. Okay, it’s not the norm, but it has happened.
And it could happen to me. I could be looking my lively child in the face when the phone rings. Brain Tumor. Cancer. Car accident. NameYourDisease. NameYourAccident.
I know that this has happened to some of you. I’m sure you rarely take life for granted. (It’s happened to me too, but not with a spouse or child or my own parent).
Again, I could have let this feeling and realization leave me feeling hopeless, overwhelmed, and forever terrified of the ringing phone, knock on the door, walking outside of my house.
Instead I chose to consider what can be done.
I can choose to live presently in every single moment that I am given with my kids. With my loved ones. How easily I forget this and begin to resent my family for being… my family! Because I just swept that or I’m trying to get the laundry done or could I please just pay this bill or write this book or… or… or…
And then that moment comes. And they are gone. And I have all the time in the world to do those things. Anyone can clean my house or do my laundry. But only I can be their mother. Be his wife.
The weight of days wasted feels so heavy. The hope of days yet to come feels so light and free.
That next morning I burned my to-do list. My two toddlers and I made ice cream in baggies, practiced fishing in the swimming pool, played in the water-park in our yard, looked for bugs…. Lived.
Just the loving eyes of my kids, while I have them, a day lived.
My husband and older two kids came home. The floors were un-swept. The laundry was still sitting in the basket. I was putting the dishes away as I cooked dinner.
“Whoops, you caught me trying to make it look like I’ve kept the house up all day!” I laughed as he walked in. Then I told him what I had done.
And you know what? He didn’t care about all the stuff left to do. He simply entered the moment with us. Set down his work stuff. Grabbed our kids. And burned his to-do list too.
Why waste it worrying? Fretting? Trying to change the things I can’t?
Instead I choose to live NOW. My house will get clean (during nap times and bed times). But more importantly, my kids will know I love them. And we will all enjoy each other to the fullest while it’s ours to enjoy.
What will you choose? What does it look like for you to choose now?