Just another Thursday morning.
The alarm goes off, every thirty minutes on the half hour (to make sure I don’t oversleep). I’ve been up on and off since 1 am for various reasons, snuggling/wrestling with a 13 month old since 9 pm. The final wake up call comes at 4:30 am and it’s time to peel myself out of bed and get in the shower.
Oddly enough, I’m feeling energized and ready to take on the day. My babies don’t share my enthusiasm, however, and the moods are in rare form. The crying starts before they even get out of bed and it continues for our entire traffic ridden drive to the babysitter’s house.
I tried all my tricks to keep them happy and eventually, they started working. An hour in the car for what should be a 20 minute drive, and blessedly, despite my usual frustration and irrational anger with traffic I can’t escape from, I managed to maintain my cool.
I sang, we looked at Christmas lights, and I played “I want a hippopotamus for Christmas” on YouTube an incessant number of times as we sang and laughed together.
It was a typical morning for us non-morning folk, still adjusting to our new way of life during the week. Not enough sleep, bad moods, and way too much traffic. But here in week 2 of the change, (which I will update you on very soon), we are in a groove and though this morning was a little rougher than most, we are generally doing well and and grace has been easier to find.
I squealed into our babysitter’s house after getting the boys calm and happy in the car, only to have them hurriedly ripped from their warm seats and thrown into the house. They all three collapsed into a puddle of tears as our caregiver rushed me out the door so I wouldn’t be late. I hate leaving them that way, but I knew they’d be okay and would pull out of the early morning funk eventually, though I wish I could’ve helped them with a smoother transition.
I made it to work on time with even a few minutes to spare and for the first time ever, an up front parking spot was available. I aimed my van toward the spot and just as I was about to turn in, another car swooped in like a bat out of hell and stole my spot.
It had been a frustrating morning already and initially, I may have let a cuss word slip.
But somehow, I was able to find grace much faster than I have in the last few weeks. Instantly, this quote came to mind.
People are often unreasonable, irrational, and self-centered. Forgive them anyway.
If you are kind, people may accuse you of selfish, ulterior motives. Be kind anyway.
If you are successful, you will win some unfaithful friends and some genuine enemies. Succeed anyway.
If you are honest and sincere people may deceive you. Be honest and sincere anyway.
What you spend years creating, others could destroy overnight. Create anyway.
If you find serenity and happiness, some may be jealous. Be happy anyway.
The good you do today, will often be forgotten. Do good anyway.
Give the best you have, and it will never be enough. Give your best anyway.
In the final analysis, it is between you and God. It was never between you and them anyway.
(this version is credited to Mother Teresa)
All l want to leave you with is this.
It’s Christmas! But whether it’s Christmas or any other time of year, we need to choose love. Even if others don’t. I’m not always great at this in my own little world. Especially not in the early morning hours or while sitting in hours of endless traffic. But I’m working on it.
Life is filled with struggles and ugly, horrible things. It’s hard. It’s stressful. It’s overwhelming. But we aren’t doing it alone; and if you search for it, the beauty is there, quietly waiting to rush in and overpower the ugly.
People can be mean, selfish and hateful. But if you look harder, they can also be filled with beauty, grace and love.
You have to invite it in. You have to stay open. You have to allow yourself to stay broken for hurting people, even if you are one of them.
We are all just here, doing our best. And we need to choose love!
Life is really just a bunch of Thursdays strung together. Search for the good and make the most of them.