Elementary years brought with them a plethora of firsts. Contagious cooties, scraped knees, and an unexpected feelings for fragile hearts.
Enjoying my brother’s birthday party, I vividly remember the call. My mom passing the cordless phone that linked to friends who called to say “hello” from their own party.
“You said you were busy so we didn’t invite you,” they snickered on the other end.
I hung up, my stomach twisting in knots. Feeling an onset of FOMO – a term yet to be defined in the ‘90s – I ran to my aunt. Pushing back my tear-matted hair – her voice gentle with kindness – she tried to soothe my pain.
“Breathe, my dear,” she encouraged, taking my face in her hands. “Don’t waste your tears on moments you won’t remember 10 years from now.”
Much to her surprise, I would.
But not because of the hurt I experienced that day... because of the lesson she so graciously taught me in that moment.
Even as adults, many days greet us with the next round of work stress, life battle or personal headache. Our kids’ appointments were inconveniently rescheduled, that presentation didn’t meet our boss’ standards or we unintentionally offended our best friend via text.
Our coworker got the promotion, we forgot pick up at daycare or our toxic acquaintance just hinted at the weight we’ve gained, thanks to stress.
Every time we think we have it all together, our world starts falling apart.
But what if we changed our tune? Instead of throwing in the towel, what if we asked ourselves, “Will this moment matter 10 years from now? Five years from now? Or even tomorrow?”
How many todays are we willing to waste on worries of tomorrow? What will matter at the end of our lives?
Will we recall the day we spilled our coffee, ripped our pants or got dumped over text? Or will it be the beer shared with a dear friend, the laughter spent running barefoot in the snow or the stranger who made an impact on our lives?
In 2019, may we fight to smile when we want to cry and practice kindness when evil lurks nearby. May we enjoy the salty taste of hard work, the smell of nature at our fingertips and the sight of pure joy dancing in the eyes of children. May we savor time and spend hope on others.
Might we pray for forgiveness, imagine the impossible and move kindly with every step. May we feel the pain of others to curb our own and share uplifting mantras with broken souls. May we remember we are but a fleck of dust in the universe – and so are our worries.
At the end of the day, might we accept the little things and focus on the big things – acknowledging this life is temporary and that’s precisely what makes it worth living (and fighting) for in 2019.