Normally I am a happy person, a glass half full kind of girl. But for the last few days I forgot. I forgot about all the good things I have and just focused on the problems that seemed bigger than the blessings. I forgot that I have the best friends, great kids, a roof over my head and food to eat. I forgot that there are bigger troubles in the world than my little ones.
I am the person people come to when they have a problem. I am the shoulder for them to lean on, a listening ear. When you are this type of person, whom do you turn to? If I am viewed as this glass half full kind of girl whom do I tell that my glass is leaking? Where is my shoulder? My perception is that I have no one to lean on. This of course is untrue. I have friends who would be that shoulder if I let them. My problem is that I don’t. I have been on my own so long that I forgot how to share a problem, how to accept help for that problem. My go to response is “I’m fine “(a sure sign I am not). Perhaps I don’t accept help because I think if I do that is a sign of weakness. I think I am tough and can do it by myself. I forget that I can’t, that I need people as much as they need me.
I don’t like when I forget. It leaves me unhappy and morose. When I forget all my blessings there is room for doubt, self-pity and unhappiness. Thank goodness this is not a frequent occurrence. That for more often than not, I remember. I remember that I have been given the gift of another day, that I have another day to love and be loved. That no matter what happens today, I am not alone.
So after several days of worry and unhappiness I remembered! My mood changed in an instant. My problems didn’t leave but they got smaller, more manageable. You see we give life to our troubles. We make them bigger than our blessings. Don’t let the bad things become bigger than the good. When you go to the place of worry and doubt (and you will go there) just take a moment to remember. I promise you will feel better. I did.
I think we often forget about simple pleasures in this fast paced world of ours. We are so busy and we are so bombarded with things we have to do and choices to make that we often don’t feel we have time for the simple pleasures in life.
I recently spent time with my best friend on a Friday night. Now the choices we had to choose from were varied. We were in the Dallas Ft. Worth area. The venues were endless. Restaurants, concerts, festivals, dancing and of course the movies.
We chose none of those. We decide to stay in and make dinner and visit. Now on the surface you might say, what could be remarkable about this type of evening?
Well let me tell you, sometimes we don’t tend to the people that we care about. We go out and though its lots of fun, there are distractions that we are not even aware of. There is something so special about eating in your own home, about cooking even if you’re not a good cook, knowing that your friends will love what you cooked because they love you. You feel safe and loved.
So we ate and visited, talking about the little things that happened in our week. Then we decide to listen to music and suddenly that turned into going to YouTube and finding songs that we listened to in our youth. It was a trip down memory lane. This lead to a commentary about the others choice in music (I must say my choices in music were better than my friend’s). A lively debate ensued with lots of laughter, a truly good time. A time of being attentive to each other in a way that I am ashamed to say I don’t always have with my friends.
I have spent way too much money in the past for concerts, fundraisers, movies and all manner of entrainment. Usually in these events you can’t carry on any meaningful conversation, if you can talk at all. Here, I had not spent any money and had the best time.
I’m not saying we solved the world’s problems or found the cure for cancer. But what we did find was a deeper fondness for each other, a renewal of why we love each other in the first placed. I realized that even when we are with the ones we love some times we are not totally present. I suggest that maybe this has happened to you. If it has don’t worry, there is still time and it doesn’t cost any money. Just grab your loved one and get a bite to eat in your kitchen and rediscover the reasons that make your relationship special. Make time for the simple pleasures, you might just find you’ve had the best time ever!
This past weekend was the first football game for the University of Texas and was my son Spencer’s twentieth birthday. I decided to go to Austin to celebrate with Spencer.
As you can image there were lots and lots of people. This gave a festive feel to the day. I took my son to lunch, then to his apartment so I could help him with his laundry. I know, he should do it himself but it was his birthday. We spent several hours together and then he left to attend a tailgate party (that it appears I was not invited to) and the game.
Now, I guess some parents would have been upset that they had driven three hours to spend time with their child and only saw that child two and a half hours. I am not one of them. Spencer is experiencing life in a whole new way. Why would he want to spend all his time with me? He has spent most of his last twenty years with me. So I took the time he gave me, and when he left, I set out on my own. There are two ways parents can enjoy themselves, with children (which is great!) or without (which can sometimes be even greater!). This time I chose the latter.
I decide to go to Sixth Street. I knew that this was a place where young people go, but I am still young too, right? When I get to Sixth Street and I start walking around looking for a place to eat, I decide that it is too loud and noisy to eat here (guess I’m not that young after all). I wander off the main drag and find a charming restaurant, that appears only old people go to. I proceeded to order a great meal. And had a delightful time. Fortified with proper nutrition, I headed back to Sixth Street.
As I walked down the street suddenly I panicked, am I the oldest person here? I frantically look around and confirm the dreadful truth – yes I am. So I decide to get in touch with my inner college student. I entered an establishment that was rather boisterous, not to mention rowdy. Instantly I am swallowed up by the crush of humanity. I pushed my way to the bar and ordered a Ice tea, found a seat and proceed to people watch.
Looking around I immediately spied several outfits that were inappropriate. Five people who it appears had too much to drink and one wallflower who was talking to no one. All of this made me feel very superior. I was dressed perfectly, not drunk and most certainly wasn’t a wallflower. With a smugness that only comes with age, I wanted to fix all these problems. No I decide, its more fun to watch them figure it out. After all, when I was young I had figured it out. The good thing about getting older is the knowledge. I basked in this thought and settled in to enjoy the rest of my evening as the oldest person on 6th street.