Sunday, November 15, 2015

Someday: thoughts on patience and gratitude

Written by Caity

On my way to my mom's house today, I saw a panhandler out in the snow with a sign that said that he needed size 2 diapers, among other things. Luckily I had a big old wad of em in my car so I handed him all I could spare and went on my way.

I was suddenly very aware of the nice car I was driving, with the toasty heater on and the lovely warmth on my bum that only seat warmers can bring. I am grateful for my car.

I was thinking back to a time in my life when I was driving the crappy little lemon Brad brought to our marriage. It broke down all the time, got stuck in the snow, shook when it idled, had an interior that was falling apart, a dent in the door, and a lopsided headlight. It was a sight to behold. I remember rumbling around town in it, I used to think about how junky it was (it was kind of unavoidable. Everything was wrong with that car) and then smile, and think "I'll drive a nice car someday."

I realized that's been a habit of mine through the years.

Like in one of our first apartments, it was a 1 bedroom and 1 bath, with the washer and dryer in the teeny kitchen. Sometimes, when laundry littered our front room and I fumbled with all of our detergent that always fell down from the flimsy cabinet over the teeny stackable washer and dryer, I would smile and think, "I'll have a laundry room someday."

Or when we had all that awkward, lumpy, mismatched furniture in our first apartment, when you literally fell into the crevice between the back and the seat of the couch whenever you sat down. Sometimes I'd sit (read: fall) into the couch and laugh and think, "I'll have nice furniture someday."

Or when we had one tiny bathroom in our apartment in Philly and I had to wash the tub every single time we gave Bea a bath, sometimes I'd scrub it and smile and think, "We'll have another bathroom someday."

Or the times when I laid in bed at night wondering how I would make it through another day living so far from my family, I'd take a deep breath and think, "I'll live closer to them someday."

Or in all those small apartments with no closet, counter, or cabinet space, I'd pile the food anywhere I could and think "I'll have a pantry someday."

Or when Bea had potty accidents every hour of every day, I'd breathe deep and think, "She'll get the hang of it someday."

And you know what?

I have a nice car now.
I have a laundry room now. (with our very own washer and dryer that we own!)
I have some nice furniture now (can't have all nice furniture with tiny kiddos that throw up everywhere!)
We have 2 bathrooms now.
I live close to my family now.
I have a pantry now.
Bea has almost no accidents anymore.

And I'm that much more grateful for them now.

A lot of people will tell you that wishing for the future keeps you from living happily in the "now" but I don't think that's always true.
I feel like my little "someday" sentiments were moments to be grateful for what I had, and encouraging reminders to be patient, that someday there would be something even better.
I didn't always bemoan those moments where life's little frustrations got me down. Sometimes, I was able to cheerfully smile, and power through them, reminding myself to be grateful that at least I had a car, a washer and dryer, functional furniture, an apartment, smartphones to call my family with and that I only had to buy diapers for one kid. And that one day things will be even better.

By no means have I "arrived" in life yet. (does anyone really?) Things aren't perfect. I think I'll always have those "somedays" to keep me grounded and grateful.

Right now, I'm grateful for a cozy house to rent. Someday I'll own my own house to (finally) decorate how I want.
Right now, I'm grateful for my awesome swagger wagon. Someday, I'll fix that scratch I put in the passenger door :(
Right now, I'm grateful for two small kiddos to love. Someday, they'll stop throwing up all the time and be easier to take care of and take out and about.
Right now, I'm grateful that I healthily carried a baby to term in my belly. Someday, I'll lose all the baby weight.

And when those right nows are used to be's, I hope I'll chuckle and look back on the smiles I had thinking, "Someday..."

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