Sunday, May 18, 2014

I "Get" to Versus I "Have" To

     Life's happiness is all about our perspective.  Our point of view.  Our attitude towards something.  Perspective is our interpretation about life's confrontations.

     After a physically draining week, I took my hormonal children on a short road trip on Mother's Day.  Needing a day to ourselves that was not hurried nor on a timed schedule, felt like a great way to loosen the constraints of hectic lives.

     A two hour drive gave me plenty of time to reflect on the last ten years.  Between the car sick sighs of my daughter and the "Boo Yahs" of my son defeating his Kindle game, I cast back at how we have grown  during this time.  Our collision has definitely changed our family and in viewing us, we have done a good job at not letting it define who we are.  Times have assuredly been hard as our sea of challenges are gradually receding.  We have battled through the storms and the wonderfully gratifying aspect is that we've done it together.  We as a whole refused to allow life's circumstances to rip our family apart.

       Before our tragedy our lives were terribly rushed.  Working overtime, carting kids to practices and events, many of those overlapping each other.  Hugs and kisses were quick as I vaulted one child out the car door to run the other child across town, then to run the three errands I needed before the first one had to be picked up again.   Uniforms to wash, dinner to cook, homework that I didn't understand myself.  Thinking back, I recall hearing myself talk of the tasks I have to do.  I never remember speaking of them as tasks I get to do.  I didn't resent them, there were just so many with so little time that I didn't feel privileged to them anymore.

     My husband and I would often high five in the hallway shouting encouragement to each other.  Our life was happy, but I desired a better quality of time with those that I loved.  I begged myself to find a way to slow down, to be able to hold my children's hand while strolling, not dragging them along because they were walking too slow.  I wanted to flirt with my husband and maybe take a few hours for myself, doing some hobby that I hadn't had time to think about yet.  I wanted time to look at life, remember and enjoy it.

    Now, I asked myself to slow life down, not come to a complete halt. What I could not accomplish on my own had just been handed to me in a frumpy package.  Not exactly how I would have done it, but I suppose I was not specific enough in my prayers.  Beggar's can't be choosers, I suppose. 

     When I began to recover and start tending to my family again, everything I took for granted was blatantly clear.  I had never felt anything like it in my life.  I had searched for this clarity for years.  It took a one ton truck smacking me up the side of my head to give me what I desired.  How selfish of me.  How indebted I am because of it.  

     I have been a glass half full kind of gal instead of a glass half empty, but what if the glass is just twice as big as it needs to be?  That is how my perception has changed.

     I began watching my kids in all of their activities with nothing on my mind except them.  Ingraining every moment into my permanent memory.  I didn't care what else I should be doing or who else wanted my attention. They had all of me.  I hold their gazes and smile, just because I can. 

      I am grateful that I get to hear my children's heckling of each other, I get to see their pouts after being told, "no", I get their smiles as I sit in the stands after they made a great performance, I am even grateful I get to sit through.................Middle School Choir Concerts.    Putting a twist on perspective is that I only have a few more years that I get to deal with raging hormones from three teenage girls and a pre-teen boy.  I know, even this, I will be grateful for, it just may take me a little longer to get to that one. 

     We spend so much time viewing others lives, but how do we view our own?  When we break it down, is it really as dramatic as we think it is?  I say no.   

      KISS.  Keep It Simple Stupid.  Words to implement.  It really is easy if we continue making the effort to keep it so.  Life is wonderful, there is kindness, there is simplicity if you choose to view it as such.

     I am going to steal a quote from Mr. Abraham Lincoln that I would like us all to break down and give thought to.

"We can complain because rose bushes have thorns or rejoice because thorn bushes have roses."