This last week has filled my cup. The stars aligned to allow me to take a quick trip to Canada for some wonderful time with my Nana. It was everything I hoped it would be and so much more. Time focused on family and the sort of friends who might as well be.
Nana and me. A visit I’ll forever cherish.
As I’ve shared, the time leading up to this week had its share of angst, worry and uncertainty. Compounding our stress, we lost our tenant once again, catapulting us back into financial uncertainty. So much of this journey has continued this pattern of one step forward, two steps back.
So many of you reached out during this time which truly means so much. A sentiment shared time and again was “this too shall pass.” It really is so true.
While we are in the midst of our woes, it feels all consuming. We focus on it so much, dwell on it, over think it. It robs us of sleep. It feels like time slows. An eternity.
But we’ve been to this movie before. We’re getting familiar with the plot twists, the comedic relief, the lilting accordion-music-soundtrack. We know that we will find happiness and joy again. The worry over bad tenants will be replaced by relief as amazing friends rally once again to fill the gap. (Thank you Deb & Meg!!!)
We will find bliss with the capacity to eclipse the worry and angst so that they fade into the background once again. In due time, joy, wonder and happiness will return as our most profound emotions.
Such is the cycle of life.
This too shall pass.
The thing is, we need to remember this, not just in the bad times, but also during the joy, so that we savour it. So that we remember that while we feel elated and blissful, bouyed in the company of family and friends, this too is an emotion that is temporary.
All the more reason to breathe deeply, to pause, to take in every detail of that which brings you joy. Don’t take your bliss for granted for this too shall pass.
And for goodness sake, don’t feel guilty in the moments when your happiness and glee feel almost selfish. (As moms we’re pretty prone to happiness guilt, especially if said happiness happens in those rare moments we find ourselves ALONE! Given an entire week away from your children, on a different continent nonetheless, that bliss is spectacular!)
The greatest life balance, where one dwells most often, is ideally more on the side of bliss than angst and worry. But either extreme is a temporary space. We aren’t meant to live in constant worry and angst. But at the same time, I think we aren’t meant to live in perpetual bliss either.
While no one wants to dwell in angst or sadness, it is vital. Emotions are fleeting, be it good or bad, but we must give them the time and space they need to be felt and expressed, knowing that they are simply passing through.
And in the space that they once filled, another emotion will move in to take its place. Ideally it will resemble contentment or simply peace, a deep exhale. But the highs and the lows, the bliss of joy or the heavy weighted anchor of sorrow, those places are vital and we have to give those places their time too. Without them the contentment and simple peace can’t exist. How would we recognize true contentment if we hadn’t dwelled in sorrow for some time?
In a short amount of time I have held sorrow, worry and joy. Having moved through it all I do have peace. The peace of no regrets, the peace of time well spent sharing memories, the peace of knowing that what is yet to come will be alright.
It is a special kind of peace, to be able to say goodbye. Nana’s life has had all the elements of true joy, true sorrow and wonderful contentment in between; an incredibly rich life. Such a privilege to share some time as she contemplates her final days and to see such pure peace within.
We spoke of all the things we love, critters, football and baseball, (no visit with Nana is complete without talk of her favourite teams) exploring in the Badlands and of course, family. So much of who I am comes from her and I delight in seeing the same traits in my own kids.
The sadness of goodbye is overshadowed by deep admiration and love. And that feels so very peaceful.
Once again I am leaving one home to return to my other one. So many hard goodbyes but the peace and contentment in leaving comes so much easier now.
Sometimes bliss is as simple as a gastronomical tour with one of your besties. Or a yoga class with an old friend who also needs the pause. Or a board game with my nephews where no mercy was given.
This too shall pass. Hold onto it and savour life’s richness.
And every now and then be a rebel. The feeling of exhilaration is worth a quick moment or two.