Posted on | August 21, 2011 | 6 Comments
One of my favorite Christmas movies is Irving Berlin’s White Christmas. (Lord help me if they ever try to remake THAT.) I love the silly plot lines, I love the happy endings, and I love the music. If you haven’t seen the movie, at one point, Bing Crosby’s character is singing to Rosemary Clooney. The song is simple, but the meaning is strong:
“When I’m worried, and I can’t sleep… I count my blessings instead of sheep…”
And tonight, as I tucked J into my bed for the fifth or hundredth time, those words popped into my head. I have been focusing so hard on what I’m without that I’ve failed to notice what I’m with.
My purse is over-stuffed and heavy. The good things are the most important. They are solid, sturdy, and hard to miss if you just dig deep enough. My problem has just been in the sifting through of all the clutter that sits betwixt and between. I look down into the depths of my bag and see a tangled web of gas station receipts and past-due bills. I see lids to sippy cups and broken toys, tops to long-lost lipsticks and a broken emery board or two. The things I need? They get lost in the shuffle, always seemingly just out of reach, leaving me wondering, constantly, if I’ve even remembered to bring them along on the journey.
I’m tired of spending ten minutes every morning wondering if I’ve remembered my keys, my wallet, or my cell phone. I’m tired of reaching into my bag and recoiling at the squished remnants of a cookie or the sticky grip of spilled juice. It’s time to clean out the bag I’m carrying around. It’s time to travel a bit lighter.
I don’t need to carry around all the half-done lists and phone numbers. They are only reminders of things I’ve long-forgotten. Now is too important to weigh it down with things left undone.
I don’t need to burden my shoulders with the what ifs and the could-have-beens. The past is the past and no matter how many times I replay it in my head, I can not change one single part of it.
I don’t need to spend so much time worrying about things that I can not change.
My time is better spent as I have spent it today. My time is better spent living than remembering; doing instead of planning. Today, I counted blocks with my son as we built tower after tower. I counted steps as we pushed J’s brand new ‘Mater Bubble Blower (a birthday gift from Dada) up and down the street in front of our house. I counted choruses as we sang Twinkle Twinkle Little Star on repeat. I counted stars as I fell down dizzy after spinning around and around and around, dancing with him to his favorite songs, “Kick Drum Heart” and “I Like to Move It.”
I counted blessings with J today, one by one.
And truth be told, if I’d just been doing that all along, I would have long ago lost count.