It started with this...an essay read by one of my favorite authors, Kelly Corrigan to a group of women on her up and coming book, "Glitter and Glue." And I began to emotionally crumble...
And then, I read an email from our school principal asking for an urgent prayer request. The small son of one of our parish families was diagnosed with a brain tumor and scheduled for brain surgery. The procedure would take 10-12 hours. He is five years old. More and more tears.
And then at 10am this morning, my step father called and we had a wonderful conversation, all the while, he was apologizing as he heard me multi-tasking with our three-year old trying to keep her pacified while trekking with the dialogue. And just as I was hanging up, he said, "Oh and remember, try to enjoy this time...it just goes so much faster than you think it will."
And finally, I went into the bathroom and sobbed. I tried at first to chalk it up to being on my period or being sore from shoveling the day before or running six miles this morning. Or from being cooped up indoors with bitterly cold temperatures and members of my family who keep falling down with the stomach flu and upper respiratory junk. Or, the fact that I'm just perpetually tired and feeling less than.
But once I let all of the excuses go, I realized...THIS...what I'm doing right now is the great adventure. It won't happen when I make it to Tuscany or find myself drinking espresso in an outdoor cafe in Paris. It's not when I finally have the time to seriously write or to actually clean the house instead of just hiding the shit in closets and corners. It won't come when I'm 10 pounds lighter or able to fit into that dress in the back of the closet or those jeans crumpled on the shelf. It won't come when my children can drive themselves to their activities or when we have enough disposable income that we can go on lover's getaways or have nice things. No, all of that will be beautiful, I'm sure. But it's not when life or the good stuff comes.
The good stuff is here, now...whether, according to Kelly Corrigan, we attend to it or not. We can either soak in our little ones or let them be periphery to our lives. We can choose to love and to give ourselves grace or we can compare and be bitter when it just never seems to work out in our favor.
We can give up the ideal image of our bodies, our marriages, our families, our jobs and embrace that which we have been given...which is often, much...when we really stop to reflect.
When I'm feeling like I've put my life on hold for whatever condition is most appealing at the time, I force myself to remember that tomorrow is guaranteed to no one.
The adventure is today. The moments are now. The people are here. The ride is in motion. Are you enjoying it or simply letting it pass you by?