We learn about life from so many people who come into and out of our lives. Those people can teach us to appreciate so many things – or they can come as lessons for us.
That can be good or bad, depending on how you look at it.
Here’s a good example: a kid once wrote an answer to the question, “How would you make marriage work?” His answer was, “…tell your wife she looks pretty even if she looks like a dump truck.”
I’d like to meet that kid.
Or how about the kid who, on a rainy day, told his mother he wasn’t afraid of the lightning because it meant God was taking his picture?
It’s all in how you look at it. Perspective. We complicate things so much as adults.
Every new year we resolve to be better, do better, try harder and reach goals that we didn’t accomplish in the last year. A friend of mine once excitedly told me about her upcoming trip to California.
In the same conversation, I excitedly told her of our new counter-height bathroom sinks and high toilets that were going into our bathrooms in our home.
It was our perspectives on happiness, though I think I should work on getting a life.
From the time our daughter was little, I would sit at the edge of her bed at night and talk to her about all kinds of things. I started out close beside her because she wasn’t all that big in those very early years.
But over time I noticed that I was sitting back a little further as we talked. She was growing up, and I could either love it or fight it. I knew I would never win that fight, so I chose to love it, albeit, with secret tears in my eyes sometimes as I left her room.
When she was married a year ago, the path to the altar was a rocky one at best because of all the issues that hovered over the process.
My father-in-law became ill and was hospitalized six weeks before the wedding. Plans went on, clouded by the fact that he was gravely ill. Family members took turns sitting by his hospital bed day and night, waiting for what would eventually come. And yet, the wedding plans went on.
One evening as we waited in his hospital room, our daughter was going over her wedding planning notes, when she began to wipe tears away. She said, “It’s no fun making wedding plans from Grandpa’s hospital room.” It was wedding planning from her perspective.
That sweet man went to heaven just one week before her wedding. I felt sorrow for so many people, but especially for my husband and our daughter. For my husband, he would bury his father and give away his daughter all in the same week.
For our daughter, the happiest day of her life was clouded by such a rough week, and the memory of another man whom she loved so much. Her wedding day was bittersweet, and it gave us all a new perspective.
It made us all appreciate the fragility of life a lot more, even though for a while we didn’t know which end was up, and we had to think about which event we were planning.
Last Mother’s Day I was putting together a message to send to a friend who had lost her baby just weeks before she was to be born. I knew it would mean something to her that someone remembered her child, and the emotional pain that she herself has felt every day since then.
After all, she is still a mother – even if the mother of an angel.
At the same time I was about to send it, I received a text from one of my sons, from a tractor in the field miles from here, wishing me a happy Mother’s Day.
I had a new awakening in that moment of the very special way in which I had been blessed. He got to grow up and was able to send me a Mother’s Day message.
Because of the project at hand, my heart thought about mothers everywhere who have never experienced that. His text message was enough.
Life is mostly what we make it, even if we need to turn it around from time to time and see it in a new perspective.
Schwaller is a Farm News correspondent from Milford. Reach her by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org and at www.karenschwaller.com.
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