"Contentment will come when you are grateful about everything."
I heard this quote recently and it stopped me in my tracks. I knew I was struggling to be content in my current situations because I knew my heart was not at ease and I yearned for the future and for things not yet revealed.
As a mother, we are always looking ahead. We are busy planning ahead to purchase all their seasonal attire, we plan holidays and events, meal planning for the week, signing up for recreational activities, etc. If were not planning ahead, we get behind.
With this in our nature, it's easy to also try to plan ahead the things that are beyond our control; or not just plan ahead, WISH ahead.
We wish for the days that a behaviour would stop, wish for the days when they don't need help to put on their own shoes, or wish for the days when my husband and I can have our sleep in mornings again.
But you know what that wishing does?
It wishes away your life.
I recently was able to go shopping to Value Village (a local thrift chain) and planning ahead, I was looking for winter jackets for the kids. I was able to find $5 snow boots and a pretty much brand new, gorgeous snow jacket for $12! BOTH in my eldest sons perfect size! I also had a 30% off coupon and I couldn't have been more thrilled at my finds and savings!
I got to the till with my thrifts and the feeling and a rush that you get (maybe only thrift lovers get this?) when you purchase your discounted items...you just feel SO satisfied.
There was this old man behind me, he looked in my cart and said, "well that's a nice jacket you found!"
"I know! My sons size AND it's pretty much brand new for $12!" I replied.
His response completely took me by surprise. He was so genuine and replied, "That is just wonderful! Oh I am SO happy for you. You got such a great find! Oh, such a blessing. What a great find. I am just so happy for you."
My first thought was how I wished this man just followed me every time I got a sale! He clearly gets the joy I also feel! He reminded me of that IKEA commercial, "Start the car!"
He was the sweetest old man wishing me on my way. When I got in my car his positivity definitely left an impression. His words made me stop and smile and realize the blessings in the little things.
Oh how I forget to be grateful for the small things.
While I'm busy wishing away my life for the future, I'm missing the beauty and the blessings in the stage I'm in.
Yes, I'd love that behaviour to stop (don't we all); but that's wishing for my son to be older. Yes, I'd love to not bend over to put on my sons shoes anymore; but that's wishing they were independent and don't need me. Yes, I'd love to sleep in and enjoy the silence, slowly waking up enjoying the warmth of my sheets; but that's wishing that my boys don't jump in our bed anymore in the wee hours. In our house, those mornings of the four of us in bed include tickles, jumping and wrestling; but mostly kisses and hugs.
I don't wish for those things to end. They may be small things, but I am grateful.
I'm grateful that my boys are little; I can still snuggle them and read them bed time stories. I can pick them up in my arms and get kisses and hugs on demand. I'm grateful that I can teach my boys independence eventually, but in this stage I'll gladly have them sit in my lap while I put on their shoes and get and extra snuggle in while I do. One day they won't need me and that will be a very hard day. I'm grateful that today I am needed. I'm grateful for those early mornings in our bed that we get to connect as a family, electronic free, quality family time. I will miss those special mornings with my boys.
While yes, there are things yet unknown for our future, things I am still awaiting; today I choose to be more present. Present and grateful for the small things again; which will then lead me to be more content.
Content because I truly currently live a blessed life; a life I prayed for.
I am a mom, and for that alone I am grateful.
When I struggle to be content in my current situation, I think I'll change my thinking to gratefulness; think of the small things to be grateful for and speak the words of that man I met, "That is just wonderful! Oh I am just SO happy for you. Oh, such a blessing."
Wife. Mama. Doula. Writer. Blogger. Singer. Christian.