Tuesday, November 29, 2011

They Surround Me

Super powers are over rated. At least the ones in the cartoons. Those unfathomable unattainable things that seem to signal a hero. Running faster than a speeding bullet or leaping a building in a single bound really only matter to damsels in distress anyway. The true hero's, at least the ones I know, have much more important special powers.
In my book, if I had one, the hero's would be every day women who have extreme strength. not the muscle bursting out of your shirt kind but the kind inside. The strength that makes it possible to stand back up after being knocked down and keep on walking. The kind that helps you make the strong sometimes stand alone decisions that are not the easiest but are by far the bravest.
My hero's admit weakness and accept help. They do not accept defeat though no matter how many times it seems to chase them. My hero's are real people. People I learn from every minute of every day. People I want to be when I grow up. Real people.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Making Lemonade Makes Me Laugh.

So much of life is a joke. OR the only way to get through most of life is to think of it that way. Laughter usually makes things bearable. Lemons can seem more like lemonade if sprinkled with a giggle or two.

Like you know when you open the umbrella in the pouring rain and it is ripped down the middle. The rain gushes in soaking you but do you cry and add more wetness? or laugh and start singing (in the rain I might add)?

You drive thru the expensive coffee place for your weekly treat. The barista hands it to you and the heavenly steamy smell fills the car. You place it in the cup holder and pull away hitting a bump that sends the cup flying along with your dream of deliciousness and your 6$! Do you cuss and give in to the pain of the burns on your feet?? Nope not me. I laugh...and swing back through to buy another with the change I manage to dig out.

When you realize your kid has been crunching up crackers in her room to feed her elf and shoving them under a book for a week do you yell and tear the arm off the poor unsuspecting elf? NO. You giggle as you sweep up the cracker crumbs and ants and you write a note from the elf thanking the kid for feeding him.

Like when you call the Dr.'s office to see if they have any flu mist left and they tell you they only have ONE and you really need three....so you talk to the receptionist for 10 minutes trying to rationalize enough to choose one kid over the others for the mist instead of the needle. Only to start to giggle. Loud and uncontrollably. Into the phone. And end up not making an appointment for anything at all.

Or when you order your teenage daughter jeans online and can't face the fact that her legs are as long as yours even though she tries to tell you. You order what size you wish she still was. She tries the jeans on and they are half way up her calf and look ridiculous yet while trying to keep a straight face you try to get her to keep them and wear them with boots so you don't have to admit defeat.

When my husband complains about my coffee breath do I stop drinking coffee?? of course not! I make him a cup with half a container of creamer and a dash of coffee and serve it with a smile. He feels like he has become a coffee drinker too. It is a win win situation. He doesn't notice my breath anymore and he buys me the good kind of creamer.

I figure laughing so hard you cry burns lots more calories then just crying. I choose laughter.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Rough Edges Are Pretty Too

November. Already. I like the idea of being thankful all year for things not just one day or one month. Because I am... you know...thankful. But to clear up exactly what I really cherish I wanted to say a few things. Things that I have just recently figured out. I am slow I know but sometimes things that are most important take time to realize.

To me the things that I find to be the most important in my life are not things at all. Nothing you can really touch or see but things you can feel. Finding that peace in your own life where you aren't trying to make things perfect anymore. Accepting what you love warts and all, no more trying to smooth the rough edges to a slippery pristine perfect. Realizing how important it is to love who I am when I am with someone... as important as how much I love that person. Why surround myself with people that I can't be myself with and enjoy myself with? I won't. Not anymore.

Tangible gifts are nice for sure but giving the gift of time to someone is more important. Taking the time to really know someone and experience memory making together. Reading a story or jumping in a pile of leaves makes more of an impact then a brightly colored package arriving in the mail. One hundred thousand presents don't equal the same as making a lopsided cake together or licking the spoon afterward. A pocket full of things doesn't make you a better mother, father, friend or grandparent...not with out the time investment.

Lastly I am grateful that I can lend an empathetic ear to those who need it. I pride myself on being able to listen and feel for but not judge those who confide in me. Real empathy takes becoming the other person and not reacting with approval or disapproval. It means listening and reacting in a calming, soothing, bridge-building way. Without having true empathy I don't really think it is possible to develop any relationship past superficial.

So those are the things that come to mind when I am asked what I am thankful for. Also the things I hope my kids can someday say they are grateful for.