Girlhood. Momhood. Lifehood.
Insights on navigating the craziness of life with young kids one — “large coffee with skim please” — day at a time.

Hand Picked

  • Red Carpet Alert
    The Golden Globe awards are Sunday, January 11th..oh, the dresses, the stars, the movies that I haven’t seen…but I just love those fancy award shows.
  • Must-Have Mules
    So I was cruising the J.Jill site today checking out clearance deals and found these darling silvery grey mules. These shoes could definitely help chase the winter blues away!!

Just Breathe

May 26th, 2008

Over the past few months (ok, longer than that) I’ve found myself immersed in a pace of life that is way too hectic for my liking. Most days, I struggle to sneak in various projects and “to-do’s” as I simultaneously manage/facilitate/direct the activities/meals/projects/agendas/relationships of our daily life. It makes me feel like nothing is getting the attention it deserves. And because of this constant pace, I keep thinking about a moment I had with a fellow mom at a birthday party recently. I just haven’t been able to get it out of my head since.

At this particularly festive party for one of my son’s friends, I made a point of going over to say hello to an acquaintance of mine, “Carol.” Sadly, Carol lost her husband recently - and very unexpectedly. When I saw her, I told her I was sorry for her loss, and she was very appreciative and gracious. Then we started to chat about mundane things. As we talked among the balloons, kids, and decorations, I couldn’t help but think about what her life must be like at that moment. There she was, on a regular Saturday at a birthday party with her 7-year-old daughter. If you didn’t know her and her sweet little girl with the big smile, you’d have no idea what they were going through.

After a few minutes, my son came running up to me with a beach ball-size inflatable fish that was part of the décor for the party. It was starting to go flat.

“Mommy, Mommy, can you blow this up for me?” He says excitedly.

I look at the big deflating fish and say, “Oh, honey, I think it’s probably got a hole in it. Why don’t you leave it here and I’ll do it later? Maybe go find another one?” I was busy chatting and I honestly didn’t feel like huffing and puffing into that plastic toy.

As he starts to protest, Carol reaches out her hand and says, “Here, I’ll do it.”

She takes the balloon and quickly blows it back up for him. His eyes light up with delight and he takes it and runs off again. All of the sudden I felt really lazy. And really guilty. Here she was, a recent widow, blowing up a toy for my son. While I just couldn’t be bothered.

I try to remember that moment with Carol when often I find myself on warp speed. She, unfortunately, is facing the reality of a life that is changed forever. A life where she probably doesn’t take anything for granted anymore.

With her small and thoughtful gesture, she reminded me that the most important thing we can do sometimes, for ourselves and for our kids, is to just stop for a minute…

and breathe.

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