Sunday, July 13, 2008

Half Empty Meets Half Full

Most days are so crammed with SO MANY THINGS that I become very small-minded. Aggravation over truly small things make or break my day: my office schedule is screwed up and overbooked, Meatball busted his chin and looks like Scarface, my mother-in-law has opened up yet another jar of peanut butter and now we have 3 barely used jars of peanut butter in the pantry (along with 2 half used Saran wraps, 2 half used aluminum foil wraps, 2 open bottles of vinegar, and I will have to stop now or start twitching again), and Husband has again left a damn flood on the bathroom floor because he just refuses to drip dry for 2 seconds before stepping out of the shower. But when I stop to consider my life. I am so grateful to be aggravated by those things.

When I was a teenager, I used to lie awake at night devising escape plans in case someone broke into the house at night. I would choreograph fight moves to defend and defeat random criminals who might hold my classroom hostage. Since becoming a mother, this fear of random terrorist activity has magnified. Now I have to karate-chop a knife weilding mad man in addition to holding a toddler and baby! That is a stressful scenario to plan. It's when I am rocking Meatball at night and he is cuddled perfectly in the crook of my neck that I become most anxious. Such sweet, innocent, defenseless children! And the world is full of bad people and freak accidents. Why in the world would I subject the little ones whom I love the most to these atrocities?! And why in the world would I even consider having a third? There would be NO WAY I could perform hand-to-hand combat with a terrorist cell while holding three children. A mother has to have limits.

As ridiculous as all those scenarios are, there are very real dangers in the world. We live in such fragile balance. There is no way to ensure a safe future. There are so many instances of previously peace states now in total chaos and in the throes of hellist war: Africa, the Middle East, South America, Asia. There are few places on this small globe that have peace. True peace. Isolationist United States is becoming less and less. Every country affects the other. Neighbors have turning against neighbors with shedding of blood time and time again. Nobody knows who will be the next target.

Contrary to what I have been writing, I do not walk around fearful, anxious, and ready to blast someone with pepper-spray. When my mind wanders to that troubling corner, I am able to shed some of that small-mindedness. Who the hell cares about a little scar on Meatball's face? I should be so luckly to afford 3 jars of peanut butter (and 2 Saran wraps, 2 aluminum foils...). My husband is alive and well and not held hostage in some Columbian rainforest, subject to torture at the hands of crazy radicals. He is only subject to torture by me. My annoying partner? Well, she can still shove it, but I don't have to let her ruin my day. It's good to be alive. It's even better to be healthy and be surrounded by healthy loved ones. Life is too short and fragile. The future is uncertain to take the fortunes of today for granted.

Instead of walking in fear, I walk with faith. I walk with joy. Every uneventful boring day is one to be cherished. This joy is deep in my heart. Sometime so deep that I don't show it. I act like a pissy whiney fool. I fail to be a witness. But most days, I come across something that does remind me of God's blessings and graciousness. And then I tell myself to shove it, and my spirit, and therefore my day, goes about much better.

People who know me in real life think I am a bit dramatic and paranoid because I do have a big mouth and can't help let out a few horrible situtations I conjure up. But I hope that I do not act as such. It's like a real live debate between the Old Self and the New In Christ. My commitment is for my New In Christ spirit prevail in all that I do. However, I still have passports for the entire family should we need to flee the country at a moment's notice.

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