So I’m off traveling the world! Well I’m in lovely Charlotte, North Carolina, so traveling the states… and I expected the trip to go well as we (my coworker Matt and I) visit customers, head to dinners, visit some sites…etc.. What I did not expect was my nearly 9 month old to become sick, his O2 levels to go down and for me to be FREAKING OUT that I’m not home! Now before I go on, rest assured the little man is OK and I should be home around midnight, within the walls of my abode, checking on him and my little lady snug in their beds.
Back to the topic at hand, expectations. I think they are the thieves of joy…let me explain. Many times when I have expected life to go a certain way, things have gone awry, for instance my example above. Other time when I have NOT expected things to go any which way, I have been more than pleasantly surprised at the outcome. Please note, I did not say always, we have all had a few surprises pop up from time to time that didn’t turn out so great, I’m aware. My point of this post is that navigating through life without expectations from another person, a situation, a set plan, recipe, WHATEVER and striving for a “Let’s see what happens” attitude is so much more fun!
One more recent example that I’m having a tougher time with is guiding my daughter through her struggles with school. I think most parents in general expect there to be ups and downs, but struggles in first grade?? No, I didn’t see that one coming. My sweet, feisty little lady has yet to master the art of reading. Now, I am sure if you are anywhere near my age you may be thinking, so what, she’ll figure it out eventually. Back in the day, OK the 80’s, when I was growing up, school was much different than today. The curriculum was not as difficult, I really don’t remember reading being a big deal at the age of 6 and I definitely didn’t have 2 assignments to complete each night. My point? THINGS CHANGE and you gotta roll with it, even when it’s hard. Now rolling with your child struggling is by far the most difficult challenge I have had to date. To put into perspective for those without little ones, I once heard someone say that watching your kids is like watching a piece of your own heart walking around. I found this statement amazingly accurate, so it literally breaks my heart to watch either of my kids suffer.
However, you know what we parents have learned along the way and something I know I preach to my kids:
So what’s a Mom to do? Deal and move forward. Help my little lady anyway I can and let her know it’s OK. Let my hubby handle taking care of the little man while I am away. Continue to enjoy the present, including the beautiful city of Charlotte and our visit to Freedom Park. Check out this cute fella.
And really mean it.. show it, live it. Not only in the words I am typing here, but also my actions and reactions. Not so easy all the time. It’s hard to not get frustrated when my few moments of peace are taken away abruptly, when my feelings are hurt, when I am not as productive as I wanted (umm.. expected!) to be. It is a challenge to continually remind myself that it is OK, that you can roll with it, in the bigger scheme of life I probably won’t remember these little mishaps and they won’t matter. Not the way the happy moments matter, the ones that stick in your head and in your heart.
More moments and less expectations… that’s my new mantra.