I find it quite wonderful to be the one to say "There, there, dear, these things happen", rather than to be the one bawling and squalling and at the mercy of all the hormones running mercilessly through your body, along with the tears that seem to be your constant companion throughout your 20's and 30's. I remember it as being just exhausting, even before I had children. I must say, I do not miss it. I find it quite hilarious to remember what I thought I needed to shield my mother and grandmother's from when I was younger. As if they hadn't walked down that same road at least once and probably several times before. What a waste! It is the blessing and the curse of youth that one can be so self absorbed and completely unaware that it has all happened a million times before. Well, they will learn. A lot of it will happen to them, and they will live to tell the tale. Not to anyone who will want to hear it, alas, but then that is what blogging is for.
This is what makes me glad to just be here, now, most of the time. It was the lesson I learned while my mother was preparing to leave this earth. When you find out that you ( or a loved one) have terminal cancer, and it's the worst thing you could possibly imagine, and you try to wrap your mind around that, you might think you would lose your mind. You might wish you would lost your mind! But no, you wake up in the morning and the world goes on. You slowly come to realize that what is needed now is not frantic activity, but simple appreciation of the fact that you are alive today and look outside! See what God has given you this day! Feel the soft breezes, listen to the birds, the beauty of snow in sunlight can be mesmerizing. It should be mesmerizing. Whatever is going on in the world is going to continue, but so will the soft breezes, the birds, the snow and the sunlight. This was my lesson and it became my mission for the rest of what remains of my life. The trick is to appreciate what you have right now. Spend time with quiet, and let yourself listen to God. You might be surprised how much He will talk if you will just be quiet and listen to Him. Talk about having seen it all before, you may have no idea....
I am back to regular life now that Abigail is gone this week. My house is decidedly quiet with just two teenage boys, who keep looking around and letting the dogs in, as if it just seems wrong without someone to snuggle up with you. It is wrong. The dogs are in heaven.
I was thinking of all this last week, since I was on vacation with a 3 year old, I even took a vacation from the news. I turned my back on it. Was not speaking to it. Did not care what happened. You want to know why? Because several times when I lost myself in such trivial details as cutting an orange into an even and perfect 8 slices, the sweetest little girl would come up and kind of melt into me, and say "Mimi?"
"Yes, my angel baby?"
" I luff you", she would reply, and I would lean down and swoop her up into my arms and I would rock her. She loves to rock, always has, and she likes Down In The Valley best, which I love also because I actually know all the words to several verses. It is also incredibly easy to make up words if you forget, and they never know any different. (wink wink)
And while I rocked her, (which I did a lot) I told her that even if she got big enough someday that I could not rock her anymore, she would never be too old to lay her head on my shoulder and tell me everything she was glad or sad or mad about. That she would never be alone. That God was always with her even when she seemed to be all alone, and that there were so many people who loved her, even if they couldn't be with her all the time.
When we went to the park and she wondered where "all the people" were, (she is used to city living, poor thing, and seemed to be wondering where everybody was no matter where we went) and I caught myself worrying about whether today would be the day when Iran would finally achieve nuclear missiles and attack Israel once and for all, I looked down and saw this:
And made myself be here, now.
Instead of worrying about what my children's lives would be like ( they will only rent houses, never own, may possibly be led down the path of socialism and live like slaves, never be able to feed their children) I listened to laughter as I watched this:
When I told her she could pick all the yellow flowers out of the yard (dandelions), bless her soul, she filled up a whole little bucket! She kept saying "These flowers are for the people!" and I told myself that this was an extension of 'the people' she kept looking for everywhere and NOT some kind of socialist indoctrination delivered via some state funded daycare. It's ok, her mother doesn't take her to daycare anymore. She is running a daycare out of her home so that she can stay home with her children and I am so very glad to see the younger generation re-claiming the right to raise their own children. They might have to fight for that right before long, but they are pretty tough and I have faith that they can win.
I told her we might be eating those before long and we laughed! They all bloomed again the next day and she thought it was a miracle. Who am I to say it wasn't? Every day is a new day and so far the world is still here and there are children all around who would just LOVE to tell you some things if you will only listen.
I think it's the only way to save the world, not to mention America, which is kind of tied to the train tracks right now, not that I think you should let the stress get to you. Breathe, just keep breathing and listening. It is not rocket science, it just takes some time, which is still free so far. Knock on wood. We have to keep working at it one good deed at a time. Is there a child unattended around your area? Get to know them, you know some stuff, they can help you weed, rake, or burn leaves. They just love to burn stuff! They also like knowing there are nice adults around who listen to them, even when they don't think they have anything to say. You will see their world through their eyes. You will probably be amazed.
As I rocked, or picked flowers, or pushed her on the swing, I thought of the movie Finding Nemo. Remember the part where they find the turtle and find out about the Gulf Stream? They can't see it, but once they are in it, they can get where they are going much faster and easier. You can't see it, but it's right there, and once you get in it you know it. That is the secret of life, letting yourself be in it, having faith that it is there, right beside you, and all you have to do is let yourself find it, and it will carry you forward, to exactly where you are supposed to be. It might not be where you thought you were going, but it will make you the person you are supposed to be. With any luck, you will find it rocking a baby, but picking all the yellow flowers is good too. Never forget to count your blessings, it's a great way of keeping things in perspective. Spend quiet time listening, even if it's only to birds or the breeze.
Just some advise from an old lady who doesn't know anything. Wink wink.