Sunday, April 3, 2011

{back to a fresh perspective}

A couple posts ago I had mentioned a fresh perspective:  bitter or better.

Well, I really want to get back to that as I have been trying to carry it with me daily.  Last week was turned utterly upside down for me.   As in, I literally felt like I was hanging from the ceiling fan by my toenails!  Throw in getting ready for a surgery that I really didn't want to have,  Scott having a really, really rough time with migraines and not being able to provide much help at all, working in the office the 3 days prior to my surgery date on a huge, headache-producing project with just the regular daily agenda.  It was a tad stressful.  And, stress, I've learned can either make or break me.  By nature, I think I tend to do fairly well with stress and sometimes I think it squeezes the best out of me..........other times it squeezes the plain and simple YUCK out of me and spews over.  And, trust me, it can be ugly. 

Well, on Tuesday morning it was not only nipping at my heels but taking painful chunks out of them.   I think on Tuesday, I slept in to the late hour of 4 am.  There were things I had to accomplish before I started my day at the office.   And, just to provide a little window into my days of late........we just finished the Proverbs 31 study during our Wednesday night services.  It was wonderful and I think I mentioned here before that I had gone out on my own and studied different resources on the topic other than my study guide and Bible.   One thing struck me and I have been able to carry it with me almost daily..... the fact that at a point in our life {typically middle-age} we begin responding to the circumstances, chaos, problems, just life in general in either a 'bitter or better way'.   We either age with a bitter attitude or a sweet one.  And, honestly, in looking at those around me, I have no doubt that theory is correct.  So, in saying all of that, when I feel the stress rising and that I'm about to become ugly......I try to pull from that and put it into practice immediately.  Sometimes it works, sometimes I still need to work on it.  

 Now, back to Tuesday morning.  I had gone to bed very late, up early, trying to get necessary things wrapped up, kids prepared for the day, lunches packed, {I did actually get my quiet time in}, laundry, pick up the house, etc.  I was doing well until I found a pile of shoes, SEVEN pair to be exact, by the garage door.  I could feel my busy, but content attitude simmering.   As I piled my arms full, I began stewing.  Thankfully they were all asleep.   But, why, why, why could they not carry their shoes to their rooms?  And, this encompassed all three of my guys.   Suddenly, I became a martyr in my own mind.  Feeling sorry for myself with so much to do, a horribly crazy-busy martyrdom. Lovely.   I could have stewed until they got up and started their days off REALLY well.  NOT.    

But, then I had literally had a flash.  I have no doubt it was divine intervention sparing my little family to what could have been.  A not so nice awakening.  

I have a friend {TH, sorry to drag you into this without a warning} that has a front door that makes me smile every time I walk up to it.   Rarely do I walk up to he door that there are not at least 6 little shoes placed right at the entrance.  Placed is not the right adjective, more like kicked off and scattered together.   I always smile.  So, so sweet.  Evidence that 6 little feet had an afternoon of play and kicked them off before they called it a day.  I have gotten to the point I actually look for them as I walk up their sidewalk.  And, they are typically there.  As they were on Wednesday.  If her collection causes me to smile, why did mine cause me to scour?  Why did the same scene look so ugly on my side of the pasture, or door, for that matter?  Attitude adjustment in progress as I carried the shoes to where they belonged and thankfully my perspective changed.  I like to think that my gratitude for my family is carried with me always.  But, if I am honest with myself and doesn't take much to forget that blessing.  I hate that!  Why do I allow such little things to rob me {and them} of that joy?

Particularly, when you are in the throes of feeling sorry for yourself  {aka ME} I could have carried right along with my bad attitude and ruined their day as they climbed out of bed with......"how many times do I have to tell you to put your shoes away?"  And, although there is an act of obedience that probably needs to be dealt with it wasn't an issue that should have started their day off in a bad way.  It was a bitter pill to swallow, because if I had focused in on their lack of appreciation, respect, gratitude was my own attitude of the same being reflected to them......and to HIM?   Because the grass can  always look greener, TH's entrance with kicked-off shoes reflected an afternoon of play, bike riding, running, scuffs from adventures, etc.   Mine:  initally was the exact opposite. 


 It goes back to bitter or better.  I could have continued to stew or I could have sought the beauty in it.  Unknown to them, I chose the later.   I am sure I will continue to pick up hundreds upon hundreds of pairs of shoes.  But, I have a feeling that each time I do I may not have the same response as I did Tuesday morning.  How could I forget the years and years of concern that I may never have little shoes to pick up?  or, after the accident, am thankful for big shoes to put back into place?   

These shoes carry lots of moments with them along with the scuffs, loose soles and tears.  There will be a day when I won't have shoes scattered by the door and frankly throughout the, I think I'll choose to see the smile in it as long as I can.   


Tonia Hobbs said...

Sweet Post. Sweet Shannon.Yes, shoes at my door always. Shoes at my garage entrance. Shoes at my back door. Six little feet filling those shoes scattered here and there. . . i just kick them to the side until our next outdoor adventure! I just hope you guys dont trip!

Mom2Three said...

I can totally relate to this too.... right now there are shoes "inside" my kitchen door, that are really bugging me, they are not mine...but you have now given me a reason to let them stay... thanks! Always nice to have things put in a "different" view.