Live and Grow

“Live in each season as it passes: breathe the air, drink the drink, taste the fruit.” 

Henry David Thoreau

Sometimes you’re ready to jump into the week and other times you’re having to roll yourself out of bed and hope that the coffee not only wakes you up but stirs some sort of motivation. Yesterday, I was a little bit of both. It started out pretty great actually. I woke up at 5am (which i used to do but then the time changed and for some reason the adjustment has taken….a month), got a cup of coffee, did some writing, and did a short workout before hearing one of my children doing his morning mutterings. He went back to sleep though and I crawled back into bed. It was raining out so the morning called for just being cozy in bed which inevitably meant my motivation was starting to fade. But as I sat there watching the rain with my chin resting on the balled up fists that were clutching the covers, I began to think about how I often want to fast forward through the gloom of rain until the dancing rays of sunshine return. Can we do that with life right now?

How have you been doing with everything? My reactions have been a little all over the place. One of the first being complete frustration that I could not be on the front lines helping people. But I don’t have that kind of training so that wasn’t going to happen. And then it turned to helping those around me which is limiting when you’re supposed to be staying at home and doing the whole social distancing thing. Frustrated and discouraged, I came to the the conclusion that there was nothing to do but go about the usual and focus on my family. And then it hit me: my family. Is it terrible that they were the last ones I was thinking about in all of this? Yeah, I know, it is. But our lives really haven’t changed. We don’t go out like we did but my kids are little so we mostly stayed home anyway. Our routines and habits haven’t changed all that much and my husband still goes to work everyday. We didn’t have this shift where all of sudden we had time together as a family thrust upon us. But then again, what does that matter? I should be choosing to make a difference in the lives around me, especially the little ones I’ve been given, every. single. day.

What does that even look like? Well lately it has been swallowing the groan as I watch one kid fill the other’s diaper full of sand until it’s practically dragging on the ground but they’re both laughing as they watch the sand pour out from the leg holes. It’s noticing that my little two year old is incredibly empathetic, taking a risk of losing his fresh snack of watermelon to his snack-hoarding brother so that he could come sit on my lap and stroke my hair when he noticed tears rolling down my face. It looks like taking work outside where I get little buckets of water dumped in my lap or a shovel full of sand poured into my coffee, or it’s watching my kids play and finding myself laughing because their laughs are just the cutest thing and you can’t help but laugh too. I’ve been so busy trying to think of how I can be helping during this pandemic that I’m missing the opportunity to notice these things. In my desire to fast forward to the sunshiny days, I was forgetting that you can still dance in the rain and play in the puddles.

Take a moment to notice the way life is now, which might be so different from before and you might even hate it. But friends, it IS a season. Even in spring, amidst fresh flowers and greenery, sunshine and warmth, there are rainy days. But that rain is essential to good growth. Don’t wait for the next season to embrace life; live in this season and grow.

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