When you are down in the dumps, there are lots of tools that can be used to help inspire you back out into the sun; the hard part is remembering to do it and then actually doing it.
Before I was married and had kids, I never had any serious struggles like those that I have in the past few years, life was good, and if it didn’t seem like it was, I just moved onto something else somewhere else. Unfortunately (and fortunately), once you have a family, it’s not quite that simple, or so it seems to me, and problems tend to be more of a challenge to get through because other people depend on you or because they involve more than just yourself.
But luckily, the box is full of tools that we can use to help keep us inspired and make it through another day happy – not just getting by. I had a trigger date this past week: one in which something big happened that deeply effected me in a negative way and that will probably be hard to get through for a long time. I also got another letter of rejection from a job that I think would really have worked out well for the kids and I. I didn’t want to let myself get pulled down into the dark abysmal feelings of self-pity nor become overwhelmed by the hurt and panic, so I decided to try to ground myself. The last few posts on my blog have helped remind me to do so (please A Moment for Presence and A Child-like Joy). I also sat at the end of most days and wrote in my journal a sentence about my favorite part of the day. In doing so, this also helped me be present the following day, looking out for what my favorite part of that day would be, so it’s been therapeutic and fun. It has helped me be more present with my children and look for the joy in a day that reminds me of things that I’d rather forget about.
I got back from an overnight trip for work last night at 6:30, and a few hours later, when the kids were in bed and their father had left (he had stayed at my house and watched them while I was gone so that they could sleep in their own beds), I sat down to write some thoughts and determine what my favorite parts of the past two days had been.
To explain, I drive the escort vehicle for a company that manufactures sheds, garages, horse barns, and cabins, and when a load that is oversized needs to be shipped, I drive the vehicle with amber lights that either leads or follows the truck, depending if we are on 2- or 4-lane roads, to warn traffic that a big load is coming. The drivers were hauling a cabin in two parts and it was very wide. Here in New York state, we were within legal limits for using just one escort driver, but as the delivery was in New Hampshire, we passed through Vermont. Both states required that we use a double police escort, and Vermont required that we use a double escort as well, so if you had seen us on the road, you would have seen an escort vehicle, a police car with it’s lights on, the truck with it’s huge load, another police, and the last escort vehicle. I’d never done a double escort nor a police escort and was a little nervous, but it worked out well, the cabin was delivered safely – for both the cabin and the other road users.
So, when I thought about my trip, I wondered what the best parts had been, For Thursday I decided that it had come while driving about an hour from the shop, when I had seen a cooper’s hawk bank over my car with it’s wings tight as it went in for a kill. In the moment, I thought to myself that that had been a gift for me, because the truck driver didn’t see the hawk, he’d already passed, and it could have flown across after my car had passed, but it didn’t. For Friday, it was a toss-up: as we did the second police escort that day and the New Hampshire police were more laid back than the Vermont, that had been my favorite part, but I also loved getting home and having my son run out and give me a big hug, and then having the cat come out when he heard my voice and approach as if saying, “I missed you. Where were you?” It’s often the little things that are the most touching.
So take the time at the end of each day to reflect on your most outstanding moment, write it down if you are a writer, tell a loved one, or just think about it with a smile upon your face. Tomorrow, as you go about your business, be on the look out for your favorite moment of the day too. Hopefully, you will have so many moments that you can’t decide either.
Share your thoughts: What was your favorite part of today?