Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Zip-A-Dee Doo Dah: Reflections on a Tragedy

Osama bin Laden is dead. That is not what this post is about, specifically, but it's what the news was talking about when I had the proverbial 'aha' moment I would like to write to ya'll about.

As the TV in my mom's hospital room played All Osama All Day I overheard a newscaster's comment about all those people going on with their normal lives had a plane not crashed into their office building.

Normal lives.

Normal lives.

What does that mean, I thought. I pictured people going home to their families...the same dissatisfaction; the same ordinary, passionless lives they may have been living. With no idea they had just been spared to live another day. Another year. A lifetime.

That's not to say there weren't plenty of people who were happy, living their dreams, appreciating their blessings, loving their families. But that's not who I thought of. I thought of the ones who were contemplating divorce, hurting their children, taking poor care of their bodies, searching for peace and coming up empty. I thought of those who felt like life isn't worth it or thought their problems unsolvable. And even those who were happy-ish; who had a pretty okay life, good friends, a happy family, but still forgot sometimes the beautiful gift that life truly is. I thought of my family and friends, my neighbors, myself.

How do we know we weren't just spared some horrible fate today or yesterday or ten years ago? Actually, I'm pretty sure we were. At some point we've probably all had the divine intervention that saved our physical lives whether we're aware of it or not.

So, how do I muster the kind of gratitude that propels me to 'live like I was dyin'' right in the middle of my ho-hum, blahbity-blah life? I'm not sure. I'm pondering. I'm ruminating. I'm trying to get there. I want to feel like I was just spared my own, personal 9/11 without having to experience the tragedy of it.

Okay, I just realized I need to be very careful what I wish for. I'm certainly not asking for a reality check. What I'm trying to do is avoid the necessity of a reality check.

On paper, I think I have just about the most ideal life a person could possibly be blessed with. So, why is it so hard to live in a state of heightened gratitude? Still working on that. But I'm surely going to try. 'Count Your Blessings.' Is it as simple as that? Maybe so. I'm going to give it a try and see what happens.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

We Go Through Cars Like DIAPERS Around Here!

The good: No one was hurt. It wasn't her fault. She was wearing her seatbelt. It's a good lesson to learn early that you CAN get in an accident even if you're a good driver, so you always have to be careful.

The bad: Maddie got in an accident when a guy pulled out right in front of her after being waved out by someone across the intersection. He fully admitted to (and profusely apologized for) not checking to see if it really was clear, which it wasn't. We still don't know if it's totaled or not.

The ugly: Before I left the house that afternoon I had the thought that I should take my coat. I reasoned that I was just driving carpool and would be in my warm car the whole time. A picture flashed in my mind of getting a flat tire or something and having to stand out in the bitter cold. Nah...won't happen. On the way back from carpooling Andie needed me to stop at a store to get something she needed for school the next day. Andie and her friend stayed in the car because they only had their tumbling clothes on. As I walked into the store I thought I should go back and get my phone, but I knew the girls were playing on it and I wouldn't be very long. A picture flashed in my mind of getting an emergency phone call where I was needed immediately. Nah...won't happen. As I was checking out Andie and her friend came running up to me, "Maddie is on the phone! She's crying! She needs you! She just got in an accident!" Ended up standing out in the cold without a coat for 20 minutes.

Coincidence? What do you think?

Monday, January 3, 2011

January 3, 2011

What! Don't get all, "Holy cow! Kimi wrote something," on me. Just go with it.

So, I guess a couple of things have happened since I last posted. You know, Collin's broken jaw, the stolen minivan, the trip to Las Vegas for the National Finals Rodeo and stuff.

But forget that boring stuff. Let's talk about my Christmas presents! Er, I mean our family's Christmas!

First of all, it's strange and lovely sitting here in a very quiet and virtually abandoned house. Quiet, but for the sweet sounds of laundry and cello music. I don't know why the cello music, but I like it right now. Prob for about 10 more minutes and then I'm gonna be all, "Let me out of this CELLO CONCERT already!" But for now it's kinda...okay now it's totes bugging the corn dogs out of me! I shouldn't have mentioned it.

Okay. Now it's just the laundry. Later I will be making efforts to put Christmas away. Flylady says I only have to do 15 minutes at a time and I'll have it done by Friday. I have an idea Flylady: Let's do it for 90 minutes at a time and have it done by this afternoon.

Can I talk about my presents yet? Fine, I tell you what other people got, so as to seem less self-centered. Collin went berzerko over his new cello (and yes, that has something to do with my music choice earlier). Maddie loves her new phone. Andie had a room makeover and it's actually clean, which is really a gift to the whole family and also many of her friends. Christian loved everything he got. He's pretty easy since he always wants everything. I actually got Bob good stuff this year, which is very difficult for me for two main reasons. 1. He is, as you know, an incurable shop-o-holic and always has everything he wants (hmm...are Bob and Christian related? The only difference right now is that Christian doesn't have any money and Bob does). 2. I'm not usually creative enough to get around what he already has and figure out what he didn't know he wanted. But this year I didn't do too shabby: A calendar made from gorgeous pictures from Fiji that Tanner took, with all the birthdays of extended family and friends printed in it; a multi-picture frame already loaded with pics for his office; and the power-washer that he almost got for his birthday, but couldn't decide between it and a leaf-blower and ended up getting nothing. So everybody is happy and we had a great Christmas.

As for me! It was slightly anticlimactic opening the video camera that I knew we weren't keeping because we found a better one online the day before, but I'm pretty stinking excited for the one that's on its way. However, I was completely blindsided by the absolutely unexpected gift of ...(dun dun duuuun)...a KINDLE! Ahhhh!!!! So exciting!!!!

As with pretty much every new electronic gadget I get, I'm head over heels for my little e-reader. My Keemdle, as I immediately named it. I love how comfy it is to hold and read. No holding pages open, no cramping thumb, no bookmarks! Here's my favorite part: the Kindle app for the iPhone! The other day I arrived early for an appointment. "Oh no," I would normally say, "How could I have forgotten to bring a book? Whatever shall I do for 20 minutes?" Instead, I went to my Kindle app which told me where I had left off reading in the Keemdle, and asked if I wanted to go to that location and continue reading on the iPhone. Heck yes I do.

But of course my very favorite gift was a 90 minute phone call with my favorite missionary. You can't beat it. You could have a better connection without a vexing delay which caused us to talk over each other, but you still can't beat it. He sounded so great! The best part for me is to hear him laugh. He has such a great laugh! Especially as a missionary he is, well, not serious necessarily, but just very sincere and calm. So it was fun to get him laughing. Other than that, it's hard to describe what that phone call means, unless you've had that call before. It's pretty great.

Well, I can see that not only is this post BORING, but it's LONG! A goal I have for this year is to post more often, so hopefully I won't be so long-winded when I get around to it.

Happy New Year!