Sometimes life is so crazy it’s hard to celebrate what’s right. A few years ago my husband was in a terrible accident, my mom had ovarian cancer, and I was a military mom on my own taking care of two little boys. And those are just some of the bullet points that come to mind.
The nitty gritty of the in between felt even worse. Way worse.
So. Much. Worse.
It’s almost so absurd that I kind of, well, laugh. I mean what’s the alternative? Fall apart? I don’t know about you but most of the time, especially with a deployed husband, there are no safety nets. If you fall…well, it’s just that much further you have to climb to get back up. Better to hang on. Better to laugh.
I love my friend Mony. We do a phenomenal job of laughing together. I went to DC this past weekend and did some house hunting while staying with her. We laughed until we cried one night over a memory involving a past deployment, a boat sailing to Australia, a checkbook, and a completely ridiculous complication involving our military life. It really wasn’t funny. Our husbands would concur as they stared at us with expressionless faces, but that sort of made it funnier. Moments like that are good. The military has provided some really good material for the absurd over the years.
The military has also provided some safety nets. Last week I was given the opportunity to take a 5 day seminar through the Army on communication, perception, learning styles, self-reliance, cognitive restructuring, group dynamics, empowerment, problem solving, synergy, stress and conflict, wellness, creative thinking, team-building and leadership. I don’t even think I mentioned everything. I received a diploma, a military coin, and a nice moment with a General. Even more meaningful was the small team of women from all over the world that I spent the week with. We had a Pearls of Wisdom board in our room. Whenever anyone said something that resonated with the group it would be added to the board.
“Choice” makes you in charge of happiness.
Express your needs effectively so people can meet your needs effectively.
Don’t sabotage yourself with your own expectations.
Well managed conflict equals positive and substantial change.
You have ownership over your own energy. (That was mine!)
A few years ago I might have said next time this year things will be easier. Next time, however, the following year, my husband and my mom almost lost their lives. Now I say I have no idea where I am with “easier”. Is it easier today than yesterday? Will next year be easier than this year? Was last year easier? Will tomorrow be easy? I pretty much took “easier” and “easy” out of my vocabulary. Who the heck cares about easy. Easy is just boring anyway.
Now I focus on strong safety nets. I focus on right now. I focus on laughter.
A dear friend told me a few years back as I struggled with the nitty gritty in between all the bullet points to give myself some Grace.
To give myself some Grace.
I love that.
“Grace” to you.