Prayers from all across the world are going out to Las Vegas this week, and if you are like me you are probably also saying prayers of thanks for all those in your life and that they are here and alive. It is tragedies like Las Vegas that remind me that we are not invincible, that things can change any day, that I need to treasure what I have when I have it. That life is measured in moments and it is the moments that truly matter.
So I send love to Las Vegas this week and I sent love to Mexico City and Barbados and Puerto Rico last month. It has been a crazy time in this world with a lot of loss and a lot of heartbreaking stories. I have shed many tears over the recent news stories and I have hugged my kids a little bit more tightly each night.
But then right after these tears do I change? Do I act any differently? NO. I go back to my everyday hustle. I go back to rushing, to worrying, to stressing out about the nine sports games on this week’s schedule plus practices plus wondering when I’m going to feed my family dinner plus how I’m possibly going to get everyone where they need to be?!
And I realize how wrong this is. I can’t just shed tears and send prayers and not take action in my life. I need to learn from these tragedies and make a change.
Instead of stressing about this week, instead I should say: “Awesome, I get to watch my kids play nine times this week! And, Thank God for Chick-Fil A! And, Bless you amazing friends with whom I carpool!” Because guess what, I love watching my kids games and they will survive with some fried food and my multi-sports carpool teams ROCK and I have amazing friends to lean on and IT ALL WILL BE JUST FINE. We are alive, we are healthy, we have sports to play and places to play them and french fries to munch on. All is well.
And just this morning I got into a fight with my daughter and I have had a pit in my stomach all day. And I can’t help but thinking of those in Vegas or Mexico who have lost a daughter. Or a daughter who has lost a mother. Why did I have to pick on her first thing in the morning? Why didn’t I just skip it and instead hug her and say “I’m so glad I have a daughter who forgets to empty her lunch box every single day because that’s who she is?” I am lucky to have that daughter. She is lucky to have lunch every day. Worth a fight at 7 a.m. that her lunchbox is stinky and unpacked? Of course not.
So, I ask myself how to I get out of my human self and truly embrace the reality of how extremely and completely blessed I am every single day? Every single moment? How do I ignore the minutia and savor the moments?
My main dream in my life was to have a wonderful husband and have wonderful children. And my dream came true! I am living my dream! I am here now with Craig and my three girls, four people I love more than life itself, yet even in the midst of tragedy in the world, even in the midst of my pure blessed life, I am worrying about my week. I am fighting with my daughter. My daughters are fighting with each other. WHY CAN’T I STOP IT?
I try, God knows I try. I pray for help. I go a few days as an Angelic mom. Then out of nowhere something triggers crazy mom. My personal theme song is “Angel Eyes” by Love and Theft. The chorus is: “There’s a little bit of devil in her angel eyes, she’s a little bit of heaven with a wild side…”
And there is such truth to these words because I am a good person. I love my family and my friends fiercely and deeply but sometimes the Devil side comes out. I just want it to come out less and less and less and am hoping to figure out how to make that happen. But I know I am only human and can only do the best I can.
My goal for this week, however, is to take a breath and think of Vegas and all those affected. It could have happened in Denver. It could’ve happened anywhere.
And perhaps the only bit of peace, the tiny bit of solace that comes from terrible tragedies like Las Vegas is that maybe they make people like me try a little harder to do my part to spread love. Try a little harder to make the most of every single day and every single moment. I saw a pillow in a boutique yesterday that I should have bought, it had two arrows on it and it said “Don’t look back you’re not going that way.” It is so true.
My parents live in Florida most of the year and when we see an Egret on the beach my dad always sings to us; “Egrets, I have a few, too few to mention…” taken from the Frank Sinatra song “Regrets I Have A Few” It makes me smile every time he sings this, but more importantly it is a reminder that a life with few regrets is a life well lived.
For me a life with no regrets is that those I love know I love them and that I try to do my best to show them this each day. Every day. I am sad that it takes a tragedy to remind me of this, but thankful that I am reminded.
My love to all those in Las Vegas and their friends and families. My love and thanks also to all the wonderful people in my life. I hope you know how much I love you even on days I may not show it.