The Little Things and the Big Picture  

As I have said before, not only am I a detail-oriented person, but I am also good at seeing the “big picture” and how the details make up the big picture.  So I am used to focusing on little things and big things, sometimes at the same time.  What I am not always so good at is taking time to APPRECIATE the little things in my life as they are happening and the bigger things for which I can be grateful.  I’m so busy thinking about everything that needs to be done that I often forget to stop and take in the little things like the number of times in a day that my one son usually tells me he loves me or that he cleaned up something without me having to ask for a change. Today I thought about how much I appreciate that my mom always remembers to call and see how a doctor’s appointment went or if one of us is feeling better.  My kids are all very capable of doing well in school, and they are decent people overall with pretty good heads on their shoulders and who have surrounded themselves with great friends.  That’s something to appreciate but is often overlooked.

I think about these things at the end of the day when my brain is more calm, but I have to remind myself every so often to live in the moment and not think about the next thing that needs to get done or not let my mind wander to thinking about a conversation I had earlier, for example.  I sometimes reflect back on the day and wish I had made more of an effort to just relish what was going on around me or enjoy a positive moment with one of my kids a little longer before asking them to get something else done.

Every so often I stop and think about how so many things in my life could be worse than they are, but I need to do that more often as well. I do have a roof over my head, I have clean drinking water whenever I need it, my kids are all pretty darn intelligent and don’t suffer from any major illnesses, they are getting a pretty decent education, I can easily get to just about any kind of store to buy anything I might need within 15 minutes, I do not live in a country that is at war or where women do not have the same rights as I do in this country, I am fortunate enough that I can choose to be a stay-at-home mom for now, and so on.  I have my fair share of problems, but they seem so much smaller and manageable when I stop to think about them in comparison to the problems I could have.

So much of life is all a matter of perspective and how we choose to look at things. Yes, there are plenty of negatives in my life, some of which I cannot control or change.  But there are plenty of positives as well.  Sometimes I have to look a little harder to find them or think about them more consciously, but they are there.  This Thanksgiving, I will not be out shopping and thinking about the next holiday.  I will be spending the day with my extended family and will be consciously appreciating them and all the other big and little things for which I can be thankful.  This is as much a reminder for me as it is for anyone else reading it…

give and take

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