The pity train stops here.

I’ve concluded that there is no use crying over the spilled milk of a summer that just won’t stop.  At this point it is best to just roll with it.

I had a mini-pity party on Saturday when it dawned on me that school’s start was just a mere 3 weeks away.  Yep.  3 Mondays from today, that school bell will ring.  3. Mondays.

I felt sorry for myself because I just didn’t get the summer that I sort of hoped for.  I knew that I wanted to work on my business as much as possible, so I don’t regret that.  Mid-July

I mean, that’s what you do. You want something, you work hard for it. You persevere through the hard stages.

But… I guess I thought some of the other stuff would come, too . There wasn’t a beach trip. There were no fun GNOs. There were no outings. No parties. No tacking on the words “with friends” on our Facebook statuses. Nothing grand.  The only date with my husband was a quick burger from Five Guys one afternoon because it was all we could muster.  There weren’t all these special little things, and bucket list check-offs.  There were lots of times of having to say no to things that we wished we could say yes to.  But we couldn’t. We are working hard.  Like dogs.  In this season, there is very little to show for it.  We are discouraged, but not beaten.

It’s just been a busy, hard season for us.  I just need to throw that honesty out there . Maybe it will encourage you, too.  Somehow.

I like to keep this space positive and always searching for the blessings.  Believe me, I’m still finding them.  They just aren’t material.

Like empathy.

I’m thinking twice before posting something that may accidentally hurt someone else.  I’m all for counting the goodness of life.  I’m all for sharing it.  But, I’m thinking twice about how I share it and say it.  And I’m learning that if we measure our “blessing” in terms of what we have, we may actually be the poorest of people.   Does what I share glorify God, or myself?  Am I seeking my significance in the having?  Do I need validation? Do I need others to tell me I am the most, the greatest whatever? And when someone does compliment us, how do we handle it? Do we receive it with grace and thanksgiving? Or do we pretty much agree that we are awesome?  I have always tried to temper and measure these things in my sharing, but sometimes where I get twisted is in my viewing of  what the world calls necessary for happiness.

I’m learning a lot about excess and about being careful not teach my children to count wants as needs.  I want them to find joy in the simple goodness of life, not to expect entertainment and bounty.  I can only teach this as I go through the detox of expectations myself.  I like to think I don’t have them.  But I do!  It’s easy to fall prey to the mindset that if I am not creating fun, fun, fun or doing, doing, doing that we are somehow less and our kids are being short changed.  And we are being short changed.  If the supply isn’t endless, we are being short changed.  Let that sink in for a minute.

So while this little season has been somewhat painful, I am thankful to be learning something of deep value.  I think in one way it is preparing me to enter in once again to how the rest of the world lives as I go back to Thailand.  Maybe it is a refresher in that old familiar culture shock boot camp that is sure to come.  Both in the going and the returning.   I’m thankful to have experienced both sides.

Philippians 4:12 comes to mind: I know what it is to be in need, and I now what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want.

I want this to be true of me.

Linking with my sweet buddy, Tamar.

 

 

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Comments

  1. So sorry you didn’t get the summer you hoped for, but love your attitude and outlook.

    I am sure you can squeeze some fun into the next 3 weeks!
    Tamar recently posted..The Good. The Random. The Fun. v. 28My Profile

  2. What is it about summer that makes us expect more out of it? It’s one of the four seasons, one day following another. I think too often our ‘summer expectations’ deceive us. Life is still good! :-D
    Dotti recently posted..A Week In Time …My Profile

  3. Sorry it wasn’t the Summer you wanted it, but I love this. What a wonderful way to look at it. I just wrote how it seemed like there was a lot I wanted to do this Summer and it hasn’t happened yet.
    Sarah Halsteaed recently posted..Weekly Wishes #28My Profile

  4. Hi Kim! Since I have not followed your blog for long, I don´t know all the details of were you are at right now in life… But if it helps.. I am from Venezuela, and life here at this moment in time is not really one to envy, ¨fun¨has to be almost made up for our kids since going outside is getting to be so dangerous that we rather stay in, we have inflation of almost 100% in a year, corruption, tons of friends leaving.. etc… But once I read someone say that achievers have always gone through bad time, through not having all that they need… and ever since I read I´ve tried to live with a sense of not always having it all! Kim, just a thought! So don´t worry, I am sure that your kids grew a lot this summer, and I am sure that even if you didn´t notice you did have a great summer!

  5. I applaud you for seeking a perspective change. Contentment is the hardest thing to cultivate. No matter what we’ve been granted there is always more to want. If we run in circles where everyone gets _______ (a vacation, or any other number of luxuries) then we feel deprived if we don’t. But you are right, the vast majority of the world could never imagine enjoying such luxuries. I love Carolina’s comment above, so good for our own sense of perspective. I also read this article, and perhaps it’s somewhat related: http://www.jennieallen.com/quit-dismissing-your-power/. I hope you can get in a girl’s night – so good for the soul. Maybe just brownies and some tea at someone’s home would be the thing!

  6. This post – your thoughts here – really resonate with me. I’m not sure why we expect so much out of summer, but we do. I expected oodles of time to read and blog and have fun. But the reality is that I feel too busy for all that. I am reading and blogging way less than when I’m homeschooling my girls.

    When and why are you going to Thailand? We were there earlier this year…
    Jill Foley recently posted..Some Random FavoritesMy Profile

  7. Summer breaks get shorter and shorter. I am so grateful that I no longer have children in the public school system that starts on August 6 this year – those extra couple of weeks are huge. It seems there is never enough time – but I am sure that even while time has been in short supply, you have made memories with your family.

    I don’t think it is selfish to want more, nor is it unreasonable to feel short-changed when despite your efforts, things don’t pan out. Finding contentment is the trick to it all – taking a deep breath and rather than thinking of all you didn’t get done – taking inventory of some of the best things you did get accomplished.

  8. Catherine says:

    You’ve always seemed to be someone who can stand strong amid the storm Kim… and you’ll do it again. Thank you for sharing an experience we can all relate to and encouraging us all…

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