As was clear to many of you, I took a summer hiatus from writing the blog. I wanted to spend time with my kids, my new firm, my new life. And this summer I decided to quietly try something new – a summer without complaining. It was tough. I failed over and over again. I would catch myself saying something that sounded like a complaint, felt like a complaint and was a complaint. Then I would stop, apologize quietly in my own mind, and change the tape or the topic.
Today the boys headed off to school and my daughter is “packing up her life” to head back to college. Tonight at dinner I’m going to share my plan with the kids – a year of no complaining. Again, we will fail but it will be on our minds. And when we come back together next summer – we can laugh and revel in our efforts.
Look – we all have sh**. But as I get older I realize that there’s grace and understanding in life if we pay attention to what we have rather than what we don’t have.
This summer I had a few life lessons:
- Hammering, nagging, yelling, doesn’t get us anywhere. All the pushing I did about getting summer reading done … all the energy I expended was wasted when I saw them still reading (and thankfully finishing) their book the day before school started. As a young mother I actually thought it got me somewhere. As an old(er) mother I realize that it gets me nowhere.
- People go. I had 4 friends lose family members this summer. In addition, I lost a very important person in my life. This led to my “lack of complaining” cause. Words can’t fix the pain of death. It’s hard to see the light from all that pain but being thankful for the little we have is a start. XO to my friends who suffered this summer.
- Time is speeding by. I’m thankful I made the choices I did this summer. I intentionally cut the things that meant very little to me and focused on those that were important. It was fantastic. I even said no sometimes.
In July I read a column by Alison Piepmeier. It turned out to be her last one. She died shortly thereafter – but not before thanking all those around her and ___ for her wonderful life. Today I found her column on linked in – mentioned in a friend’s post. That told me it was time to come back to the blog. That told me it was time to really commit to not complaining. To being grateful that I can yell, nag, cry, experience joy and frustration. I promise you that I will be sad, unhappy and mad at times. But I’m going to make every effort not to complain. I have the gift of life. It is filled with loved ones. If today were my last day, I have no complaints.
Have an amazing day my friends.