Tuesday, April 21, 2009

tuesdays unwrapped #1

"Tuesdays Unwrapped" is about the small things. It's about the every day gifts that are so easily taken for granted. It is about taking time to be grateful for those things. Let me start with a story about a Monday.
Yesterday, I overslept. Rushing around to get the girls ready, I yelled at Brooklyn. I was running very, very, very behind. And bless her heart, this child has never had any concept of "hurry up!" Frustrated, I yelled at her. Her face fell. It was my own fault I was running behind. I had forgotten to set my alarm clock.
I got to class (twenty minutes late) and I saw my English teacher write a big "LATE" by my name. My teacher, commonly referred to as the nazi by my younger classmates, has no clue what it takes for me to get to class and to get all her homework done. Many mornings, I would have to head to the campus library at six in the morning to complete an assignment she would shred to pieces. Which is okay. I get it. But every once in a while, when she seems to derive such joy from every half point she can take off, being sure to note every person who walks in late (she will too, at 9:31), when her face gets blotchy with anger because the class isn't participating, every once in a while I just want to tell her that she is wound way to tight. I want to tell her to cut people some slack. And when she makes her comments about God or Religion, in a way that makes it clear that she is definitely not a Christian, I want to use my extensive English vocabulary in ways my Creator wouldn't be proud of. 
Made it through the next class. Called my mom. My feelings got hurt, and apparently full capacity had been reached. Within minutes I was a hot mess- sobbing and complaining and frustrated and angry and stressed and a little broken. At the risk of sounding completely shallow, here is a list of some of things I was a hot mess over:
-tired of being broke 
-tired of not having nice things
-tired of not being able to spoil my daughters
-tired of being mistreated
-tired of my roller coaster relationship
-tired of not being the mother I want to be
-tired of feeling so conflicted about so many things
-tired of not being able to sleep
-tired of school, it seems endless
-tired of feeling like there is no benefit or reward for all the things I invest the most time and energy in 
-overall, just tired of being the way I am
I was talking to her on my cell while driving. (I know, I know.) Just as I was closing up my pity party, I stopped at a stoplight. There was a man holding a sign: LAID OFF AND HOMELESS. PLEASE HELP.
And just like that, God did what He does best. We don't see many homeless people where I live. I knew what He was getting at. Alright Lord. I was sorry.
I got my cry out. Then, a block away from my grandma's, there was an estate sale. I couldn't tell you the last time I shopped an estate sale, as the prices are usually out of my range. I decided to stop, just for the pick me up. I found so many things, things I love, things that bring me joy. Most of the items I found were 25 cents! Thank you Lord. Blessing me, despite my super shallow pity party. If those items cost much more than 25 cents, I wouldn't have been able to buy them. Some of the things I found were exactly what I listed here.
Then, my mom sent me this email:

Meet Katie and Nick. Katie is 21, Nick is 23. They are high school sweet hearts. In the picture below, she is undergoing treatment for cancer.

Here is Katie, getting ready for her wedding. Even through her battle with cancer, she was able to plan her wedding day. Isn't she just absolutely beautiful? 

Nick and Katie and her oxygen tank. Not many of us imagine an oxygen tank being a part of our big day.

At her reception, her new husband and a troop of his buddies sang to Katie. Again, I just think she is so beautiful. Such a beautiful smile...
Of course, the day took its toll. According to the email, Katie can't stand for very long periods of time because of the pain it causes. 
Katie and Nick. The truest love I have ever witnessed within a photograph. 
Katie died five days after her wedding.

There are no words. Every single day is truly a gift. How dare I complain? How dare I carry on with all the self condemnation? How dare I waste a single day in negativity and sadness? Indeed, every day is a gift to be unwrapped. 

 We never know which Tuesday will be our last.

1 comment:

  1. Your post really touched me - thank you! Sometimes, a pity party is just what you need and then God steps in and says "Enough is enough!"