Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Sing If You Want To

The last couple of days I've been listening to Eric Church while running.

And even though I've been loving "Record Year" and "Like a Wrecking Ball" and "Broke Record" and "Like Jesus Does" (and others!), when I was almost home today, I listened to "Three Year Old."

And if you've never heard the song, it talks about stuff you learn from a three-year-old---like "use every crayon color that you've got" and "walking barefoot through the mud will knock the rust right off your soul" and "when you're wrong, you should just say so."

And even though I no longer have a three-year-old in my house, it made me start thinking about things I've learned from my people, about the things my children have taught me in the last couple of weeks, even.

Accept it with grace.
Just a week ago, I was getting ready to give Mia a shot of insulin.  And I can't remember what we were talking about, standing there in the kitchen. But as I was going to put the needle in her arm, I remember saying something like this:
"You know, I'm sure there are days where you wish you didn't have diabetes; where, if you could trade it, you'd choose to not have it."
And without even skipping a beat, she just kind of shrugged and said,
"Ehh...you get what you get."

And that was that.
There was not even the slightest hint of self pity or complaint. Just totally okay and strong with what she's been handed. 
Her example inspires me to accept hard things with grace 

Step up.
(This is Isaiah purposefully getting his geek on. And it makes me laugh.)

My kids were in a bad car accident with their dad a week and a half ago. And I witnessed something that touched me in the aftermath. When I arrived at the scene of the accident, I stepped inside the ambulance to find my children sitting there together. All of them were emotional and scared. A couple of them had blood on their shirts. My little gal's lip was cut, and the other one's neck had abrasion from the seat belt. Benj was particularly upset, and I looked down to see his brother sitting there, holding his hand. And when we got home? He went into man-of-the-house mode, all on his own.
Even though he was also scared and hurting, he was worried about getting the bags in out of the car. He helped his brother get dressed after I'd washed him to get the blood off of his neck and head. He was trying to comfort his sister who was crying. And when Benj was trying to eat some food and began to cry yet another time, Isaiah's eyes filled with tears and he walked around the table to his brother and began trying to physically comfort him again by rubbing his arm. And I thought about that today, the way I was touched by his leadership, assessment of a situation, and compassion.
Watching him teaches me:
Lead out. Look around. Help out. Step up. Be compassionate.

Live with emotion.
This guy, man. Whatever he is feeling, you know it. And he'll tell you. 
If he's angry, his face (and voice!) says it. 
If he's sad, tears come easily and fill his eyes, and he wants to talk to you about it. 
If he's happy, no amount of dampering can suppress his joy. 
And when he's wondering or asking big questions or has a doubt?
He's not afraid to expose that vulnerability.  
And as I think about it, you know what he teaches me? 
To live with emotion, to honor your heart, to choose to love big and love hard, to be honest about what you're feeling, to show it, to live it. And yes, it may mean that you're going to get hurt, but that pain is evidence that you're living, right?

Sing if you want to.
Just today, after my run, I was in the kitchen talking to Mia. And both of us started to laugh because we could hear Claire, 
solo, down in the girls' room, singing.  
She went from singing "Alleluia" from "All Creatures of Our God and King" to "You may always ROCK IT" (think "We will, we will, ROCK YOU") in less than a minute.
Whether she's singing about Jesus or requesting Justin Timberlake, this girl finds the joy. I can learn about honoring who I am by watching her, cuz we can only be who we are. And I love that this little woman is comfortable in her own skin; she's confident and real and deliberate. And she sings if she wants to.

So...that's my list for today.
Accept it with grace.
Step up.
Live with emotion.
Sing if you want to.

I live with amazing people; 
don't you agree?

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