Wiley's Wisdom

Joy: From the Ground Up

So Late So Soon December 2, 2014

It’s not always easy. It’s a choice I make when I wake up every morning and a thought I affirm before I fall asleep each night. Yet after a certain amount of time has passed, it has become second nature. A habit of happiness, I call it.

One of the hurdles I find myself frequenting is similar to one my forever family also battles with pretty regularly. Anticipation. It’s a double-edged sword. In some cases, it brings as much (if not more) joy as whatever is being looked forward to. And that’s okay.Happy Post Love Fest

Though sometimes I wonder if we aren’t anticipating our lives away. I, for example, found myself longing for it to be the weekend. Already. It’s only Tuesday, which means there are three full days before the weekend officially arrives. Three full days I’ve just wished away.

It reminds me a bit of something I’ve heard mom say a few times since dear baby Carter was born. “It’s the best of times and the worst of times,” she’ll say, borrowing the words from English author Charles Dickens. Like her, I believe it can indeed be both kinds of time simultaneously. I think it often happens for growing middle class families around here. While I am all for embracing the good with the bad, there is a sense of melancholy about the words I can’t get behind.

It’s the same kind of melancholy I felt today when I realized my longing for the weekend was akin to wishing three days away. Three days to breathe. Three days to be blessed enough to wake up and start the day. Three days to love, live and find joy in the little every day things around me.

“How did it get so late so soon?” asked American writer Dr. Seuss. “Its night before its afternoon. December is here before its June. My goodness how time has flew. How did it get so late so soon?”

Just because it is second nature to me doesn’t mean it’s always easy. I too have my struggles on my daily quest to find the good in the people, places and things that make up my life. But there is a constant that has a way of bringing things back into focus.

Time. From the ground up, it has a way of reminding me to press pause sometimes and think. About life and what it means to be alive. About how valuable time really is. About joy and how it lives in us. And today, about how somehow the best and worst of times can exist simultaneously and somehow manage to make us better. Stronger. Happier.

 

 

 

You Are My Sunshine October 19, 2013

I learned some things today. Until today a shower has always been that thing in the bathroom where my people clean themselves. And the sun has always been that bright thing that rises and sets upon each day. It turns out there is more to these words than meets the eye.

The day began like most Saturdays, with my forever people doing chores and various tasks around the house following slightly more family cuddle time than usual. Except today they both kept talking about the shower. I didn’t understand it. It felt like every other word was shower and by noon I was incredibly confused. I remained in a quandary when they left me to go to the shower. It’s right here, I screamed in silence, in the bathroom.Sunshine

So you can imagine my stupor when they returned home a few hours later with presents. Lots of them. And (as is the case with most misunderstandings) it turns out I was missing a very important piece of the contextual puzzle. This shower wasn’t like the one in the bathroom. It was a baby shower, which I now understand to be a shower of gifts to help us all prepare for the arrival of my little person.

Mom and dad shared stories of the afternoon while they revisited each of the gifts. The story that stuck with me most was of two of my favorite little people (Sophie and Abigail) singing a song I hold dear to my heart with my mom’s friend Dorian.

“You are my sunshine, my only sunshine. You make me happy when skies are gray…you’ll never know dear how much I love you. Please don’t take my sunshine away.”

Once I got over the initial disappointment of missing the in-person show, these famous words (by Jimmie Davis and Charles Mitchell) sunk a little deeper into my heart. As I sat by watching my people I was overcome with my own sense of gratitude for the situation.

They are my sunshine. My forever people will never know how much I love them, partially because I can’t say so out loud and partially because you can’t put love this big into words. And (at least from what I can tell) amongst the blankies and diapers the greatest gift of all was the love they received today.

I guess you could say they were showered with love. And I was overcome with joy. From the ground up, it was a pretty happy day around here. All of the clouds in the sky could not mask the sunshine in these moments. Joy and gratitude filled their hearts and I realized that is all the sunshine I really need.

I learned some things today. It turns out there is much more to showers and sunshine than meets the eye. Today these words did much more. They touched the heart.

 

A (Sun)day In The Life October 6, 2013

There is simply no excuse for me. I have no good reason for not attending the Out of the Darkness Paws for Prevention walk as promised today. Granted, it would have been tough to do without my driver (aka mom) deciding to go. Which she didn’t.

Instead I was incredibly lazy. Let’s be honest – my days are generally fairly laid back. But today I felt particularly lazy as my people hustled and bustled all over the house. The windows were open to let the beautiful fall air in and dad worked on something stinky in the baby’s room. That paint stuff is for the dogs. I don’t like it.

So I stayed close to mom in the kitchen. Boy, she was busy in there today. First, it smelled spicy with what I heard her call chili. Then the meaty goodness mixed with a sweetness she called apple pumpkin soup. (There was bacon involved with this because I scored a few nibbles when dad wasn’t looking). Finally, jambalaya joined the mix. It was definitely better than the paint smell, but I was basically hungry all day long thanks to the delicious odors wafting through the air.

Outside was busy too. The hum of leaf blowers was prominent throughout the day as this is the price my people and their neighbors pay for the beautiful trees that line the street. And then I got a visit from two little boys from down the street. I tried to hug them, but I don’t think they cared too much for that. They were focused on collecting orders for Christmas wreaths. In early October.

Here I was appreciating the fabulousness of all things fall and apparently we are fast-tracking to Christmas already. I didn’t expect mom to buy one because the season is so far away. But she has been in the habit of surprising me lately, and today she did not disappoint.

So we are all set for Christmas now, at least as it pertains to the wreath for the front door. And at first I felt kind of irritated about it. What about Halloween? And Thanksgiving (which might just be my favorite people holiday)? Then I remembered that thing I like to find in all situations. The silver lining.

December may seem far away. But it’s not. Which means all of the joy of the holidays is not far away. While I am a believer in living in the joy of the season year-round, Christmas is a time when joy abounds all around me. It’s one thing to believe something on the inside. It’s another thing to be completely enveloped with it on the outside.

I didn’t have to go to the Paws for Prevention walk today to know that. To know the importance of sharing my joy from the ground up with whomever will take it. I do feel badly about breaking my promise to attend the important event. But I know I was where I was supposed to be today. Soaking it all in. Life. From the ground up. It looks pretty good to me.

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