Life’s Little Inconveniences by Liz Nord

Photo by The Notebook Doodles

I have been sick for a few days. It is not like me to lie around in bed all day sleeping my cares away, but that’s what I’ve been doing for the last 72 hours. Well, that and reading. I have a sinus infection and the flu with a high fever too. I’ve lost three pounds in three days. Fun times. Our oldest daughter is just getting over the flu, and I think my husband has the beginnings of it now too. My youngest had it two or three weeks ago. Nice–Now I’m losing track of time too.

You know when you get really sick, have a fever, chills, sweats, and your mind gets really foggy? Everything seems otherworldly. No, I’m not crazy, you may not admit it, but I’m betting it’s happened to you too. Everything’s in slow motion and every interaction becomes more or less meaningful because you’ve been forced to slow down from the go go go thinking and be real right now. You know, think consciously without all the distractions of life.

My husband came to check on me before he left to pick up our daughters’ at my mom’s house. He asked if he could get me anything. I said, “No, but thank you.” When he left, I got up to get myself some Gatorade and saw a note from him. It was a “To Do” list of sorts.

1. Washer Repair Thursday between 8 am to Noon.

2. Volvo is leaking oil bad!

3. Thursday Soccer at 5 or 5:45pm. (Our other daughter has piano in a different town at the same time.)

Where’s the love letter with “I hope you feel better and xo’s”? That was my first thought, and then I thought, he’s sick too (not as bad as me, but still) and he’s running around checking my oil, picking up the kids, and working on our washing machine. My mind wanders…

I won’t have a washing machine for a week, I’ll probably waste a whole day at the Volvo dealership for my car to be fixed, I’ll be hanging out at the laundromat for the next week, and I’m behind on everything! I even missed my Saturday night out with the girls.

Cry me a river. So what, who cares? Life goes on. I can make any situation fun and enjoyable if I decide to.

While my mind is muddled, the usual irritants don’t hold the same regard as they normally would. My expectation of life running smoothly is less right now. Even though I hate being sick, I like the way my mind is working. The only thoughts and feelings I’m holding onto are things like: What can we do every day to be more connected as a family? What can I do to enjoy every day a little more? What do I want to do that I’m not doing? Why? What part of my life is being taken over by negative thoughts or feelings? Time to throw that crap out. Life’s little inconveniences and irritations are so unimportant compared to our relationships, our attitudes, and how we decide to live our daily lives.

We are in control here.

I love this quote by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe. He pretty much sums up what I’m thinking, but does so with far more clarity and lyrical beauty.

“I have come to the frightening conclusion that I am the decisive element. It is my personal approach that creates the climate. It is my daily mood that makes the weather. I possess tremendous power to make life miserable or joyous. I can be a tool of torture or an instrument of inspiration, I can humiliate or humor, hurt or heal. In all situations, it is my response that decides whether a crisis is escalated or de-escalated, and a person is humanized or de-humanized. If we treat people as they are, we make them worse. If we treat people as they ought to be, we help them become what they are capable of becoming.”

P.S. Today I am guest posting over at Off Our Chests. My post is about Body Image, Self-Esteem, and The Media. I’d love to hear what you think.

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3 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Becky Henry
    Mar 28, 2011 @ 07:07:30

    Liz, I completely identify with your post this morning…I’m in a very similar spot. Spent the last 2 days on the couch with some nasty respiratory bug and can totally identify with everything you said.

    My head was so loopy from all the cold meds I felt like I was watching myself in a play…didn’t even really care that we’re being audited by the IRS (my dear hubby spending all weekend crunching numbers and finding the paperwork they want). All the stuff breaking down around us seems to not matter when our health is compromised.

    As I sat this morning trying to clear my mind of the negative thoughts that kept floating by I actually said out loud to myself: “You know you are creating your own misery with your thoughts! You get to choose your thoughts now what will they be?”

    It is comforting to hear you and another facebook friend, Tama Kieves both say this morning that you are in this same low tide place AND being conscious of it and choosing to feel safe and well until we are back to making shift happen.

    Thanks for your vulnerability and insights.
    Becky

    Reply

  2. Liz
    Mar 28, 2011 @ 08:22:03

    Thank you, Becky.

    I hope you feel better quickly! And I hope your audit goes well.

    My youngest daughter woke up with 102 temp. today too. Geez…It will feel so good when we are all healthy!

    Reply

  3. akarmin
    Mar 28, 2011 @ 11:07:22

    It is so much easier to judge others, to be self-righteous and critical, when we are unaware of our own shortcomings. Arguments are a common end-result. However, when we stay in touch with the ways that we are imperfect, when we remember the mistakes we’ve made, the poor judgment we’ve used and the bad habits that we ourselves have. . . our responses to the transgression of others will soften.

    Reply

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