It Is Your Choice
This is a 4″x6″ mixed media painting on paper covered canvas.
It is funny how we need constant reminders in life. Reminders about things that we’ve already learned. Reminders about things that we have tried to to teach others, mainly our children.
Recently when I was away visiting my family with my husband and two daughters I was struck by how Imogen (my 6 year old) was constantly asking what we were going to be doing next. She asked this question even when she was in the middle of doing something that she was really enjoying. It was like she was trying to hold on to the good feeling she was having by being insured that she still going to be enjoying herself during her next activity and her next. Yet, she was worrying so much about having a good time in her future activities that she wasn’t really enjoying the fun activity she was presently taking part in. Partially maybe, but not entirely.
Remind you of anyone? Well, it reminded me of me .
Ever since I have arrived home, I have had a kind of ill feeling in my belly. Like a feeling of dread or foreboding. I didn’t want to come back this time and I really can honestly say that I am always happy to get home. Back to my life, my home. Always sad to leave my family and Victoria but happy to be back. Not this time though. I have been trying to figure out why this time is different. Perhaps I realize the possibility of ever returning to Victoria is nil to none. Perhaps I realize that if I had realized that when I moved here over a decade ago, I would never have moved here in the first place. Perhaps I realize that realization is untrue because I have to be here. My soul mate is here. The problem is, he wants to get back there too. But how? We could fill rooms and rooms of worry jars with that question. And we have, late at night looking at house listings on the internet and dreaming about having enough money to purchase something that costs twice as much and half the size as the house that we own. Now tell me if this isn’t a wast of time for two people that have so little time in the first place! So much for living in the moment, hey Imogen?
When I was a little bit older than Imogen I traveled to Ireland with my parents and little sister. On arrival at the Shannon Airport I was fairly miserable. I had an earache on the plane and was feeling tired. It was my first long flight as a child and I really didn’t enjoy the experience. I remember being in the back of the rental car driving to Waterford City to see all my relatives and I was most likely whining about feeling so awful. When I think about my parents at this time I realize now how excited they must have been. My Mum was was going to see her Mother and she probably hadn’t seen her for over eight years. Obviously, this was lost on the nine year old me but now when I think about it, I realize how anxious, nervous and excited my parents (only 32 after all) were feeling. I know when I am feeling this way and my girls are being difficult or moody I am struck with feelings of impatience with them. Like they should understand at six and three how important this is to me, which is ridiculous.
Anyway, my Dad turned to me in the back seat of the car and he told me something that has always stayed with me and really changed the way I think about life. He said that he understood that I wasn’t feeling well but that I could either choose to be miserable about it or not to be miserable about it. It was my choice.
To me, the idea that I actually had a choice to feel good or bad when I was obviously feeling bad was kind of like a slap in the face but some part of me liked the idea that it was MY choice to feel better, or to at least try to feel better. I had never before realized that I had the power to make my life better just by choosing to do so. That is some power to have and a major revelation for a nine year old.
In my life, choosing to make my life better has always been by living for right now and not dwelling on what the future holds. We can’t ever really know anyway, can we? It is easy to say worry is a wasted energy but it is hard to live those words. No words are more true. And I know that my daughter(s) will learn more from my actions than my words. So today, right now I am choosing NOT to feel miserable about it.
After all, life is so good to me right now.
Right at this moment.
I am so blessed.
So, so, so blessed.