The Little Things

Writing that post yesterday proved to be surprisingly cathartic. It helped to write about my conflicting feelings about the first months of my son’s life, and–interestingly, since it happened so long ago and I thought I was pretty much past it–the year I spent in Spain. It’s not that I really understand either experience any better than I did before, but I seem to understand my attempt at processing them more. So that is something.

I’ve been thinking a lot about how I can find some joy in the day-to-day. If there is nothing in life that is really bothering me, I should be enjoying at least a few moments every day. (And I have really only alluded to it, but we are really hitting our stride around here, and things are feeling very manageable these days.) So, at the beginning of each day, I’m trying to determine what moments to look forward to and make sure I enjoy and really taking the time to savor those moments when they come.

Some are moments I look forward to every day, like the first smile from my son after I pick him up, or the squeal of my daughter when she first sees me at school. I love listening to Game of Thrones in my car on the way to work and slipping under the covers after a long day. There is nothing better than the hour after I’ve pumped, when my breasts are empty and light and I know have 6-7 hours until I have to do it again.

Other moments are special occasions, like a Cinnamon Dolce Latte at Starbucks if I make it work with time to get in and out before class starts (and have a card with enough to money to get one). Sometimes I let myself have something indulgent for lunch or I carve out the time to watch something on TV. Whenever I get the chance to chat with a co-worker during break or before class, or with a friend on the phone on the way home, I try to revel in the contact with another adult, to let it fill up that part of me that is ALWAYS wanting more interactions with other people. I’m trying to really be aware of those moments that fill up my cup, because I believe my cup is filled more when I recognize that I’m getting what I need.

And the best part? I think it’s working.

How do make joy a part of your every day life?

7 responses

  1. Everyday I look forward to picking my girl. I love hearing her little chatter about her day and talking about all the fun things she learned. No matter what happened at work that day – she always brightens my mood.

    • Picking up my daughter is definitely one of the best moments of the day. She is so thrilled to see me and I love hearing all about what she did at school. Not being with her in the mornings makes the time we see each other at night so much more special.

  2. I was just coming here to comment on your last post – behind on my blog reading. I will do that next, though.

    For finding joy? I find that the first few minutes of my day is THE time where I have to set the tone for the day. When I first wake up in the morning, no matter how tired, cold, busy, whatever, I steal time, where I take some deep breaths and thank the universe for something. Some mornings it takes me a while to find something authentic; so I just wait for it.

    For some reason, starting my day in this tone of thankfulness makes it easier for me. Just like you, it makes me realize those moments in my day that full my cup. And looking at my life through the lens of gratefulness makes those negative things not pile up as much, you know?

    • I believe gratitude work is really important. I’m doing a fair amount of it myself these days. And I agree about setting the tone in the first moments. I work really hard on having a positive outlook as I get ready, that does seem to help me get through the day.

  3. So I haven’t been commenting much lately. Most of this is due to my life being crazy, but alot of it is because your writing is so moving. I read your blog and wish I had the words to write your posts because this is me RIGHT NOW. I’m struggling and I don’t want to post that I am, because as a SAHM, my life should be perfect right? Anyways, with this hard phase of life, I too am trying to find “the joy” in the little things again. It’s hard, I feel like I’ve taken being at home with my kids for granted. No longer does it seem “magical” or “exciting” being there for every milestone. Instead, I’m beginning to resent the short naps, lack of night sleep, and even basic interactions with my sons. I’m noticing I’m saying “no” or “don’t do that” more often than I’m praising or cuddling, and I feel really, really guilty for that. I need to get back to being thankful for my blessing. This post was right on, exactly what I need to focus on again. We are going to get through this right?

    • I don’t think that, as a SAHM, your life should be perfect. If I were at home every day with my 3.5 year oldI can promise you my life would be FAR from perfect. Being a SAHM is really hard. And I think you should honor that in whatever way you need to. Anyway, that is just my two cents, for what it’s worth.

  4. I like being open to joy, finding that it sneaks up on me, rather than expecting it in a list of planned things (but if that works for you, that’s great too). I find that the things we expect to give us joy might not always live up to our expectations, but it is always there to surprise us. It’s what got me through my pregnancy losses and infertility – a silly joke on a sitcom (not that you probably have time for that), the warmth of the sun on my back, seeing something interesting/amusing when I am driving, appreciating weather, all sorts of it, in our harbour city, a well-written phrase in a book, a hug from my husband, etc. And as you say, actually noticing those moments, and taking a second to appreciate them. That’s the most important thing, no matter how they come to us.

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