Written By:Campbell Manning,LPC
Taking It All for GRANTED…
Sometimes, I think I have it all together and that I have figured out the way to live.
Sometimes, I forget I have been spanked around and that I need to remember what I have learned.
Today was one of those days.
I am planning to meet my husband Frank, my daughter Margaret, and my second son, Neil and his darling fiancée, Courtney, at the beach on Thursday. Frank and Margaret left on Sunday, Neil and Courtney left Atlanta after work Tuesday, and after bopping through my day at work, I raced to Trader Joes at 8pm to get more of what I needed to take to the beach.Because, until tonight it was important I make homemade gazpacho for lunch one day, homemade chimichurri sauce for steaks and scallops one night, and have it all just “so”.
Being Reminded of What Matters!
While I was cooking, I decided to check on how Neil and Courtney’s drive was going, so I called him, and remembered he was probably driving, so I hung up and dialed her number.
When she didn’t answer I left a message telling her I was just checking on their progress and that I loved them both. Remembering how private she is, I called Neil to do the same, got his voice mail, and left the same message.
Ten minutes later, I got a return call from Neil and I answered with my “take it all for granted again” voice and said, “Hey! Where are you guys?” Neil replied, “on the side of the road “. And I replied, “That’s not funny”, to which he replied, “I’m not being funny – we’ve been hit.”
I thought I was going to be sick. They were indeed hit by another driver, who just cut into their lane. It was definitely the other guys fault, Courtney’s car was damaged but certainly drivable, and, most important, NEITHER ONE OF THEM WERE HURT. Once I ascertained this detail and advised him on some details, to manage, we hung up so he could attend to them.
Suddenly, the fabulosity of the gazpacho and chimichurri sauce no longer mattered. Once again, I was reminded of what mattered. That we all make it to the beach safely and have a wonderful time – taking pictures, playing games, and building memories – not how perfect the food was, what I wear, or how the weather is.
Being together is what matters. I started thinking once more about how I live my life and why I continue to fall back into old patterns and traps.
LIVE with Joy, Gratitude and Inspiration
My beloved niece and Goddaughter delivered a son early this morning, James, and THIS, also is what matters! Life, relationships, love, belonging, being together, treasuring our time, and making the effort to stay connected and valuing our loved ones.
It’s not whether the pork medallions are marinated and skewered just right or the house is dusted. It’s how we cherish our time – with ourselves, with the people we are lucky enough to have in our lives, and the opportunities we are given.
I keep wondering how many times I will have to learn this lesson.
I know I am not stupid, but apparently I am not good at remembering what I have been shown by God so many times, and sadly, I might have to learn it again. But, I hope not, and I hope you don’t either.
Take a moment and look around you and try to recognize just how much you have – rather than what you don’t have, think you need to have, or what others have.
Courtney and Neil’s survival of what could have been a life altering tragic moment, James’ safe arrival into the world and his mother, Lolly’s, safe delivery, and all of us having the good fortune to make it though another day – should not be taken for granted.
Our days should not be filled with fear or rigidity – but rather, joy, gratitude, and inspiration as to how to live going forward, with hearts filled with appreciation for what we have and need to treasure.