Friday, May 23, 2008

Evening Musings

I think there comes a time in every person's life, when he or she begins to take stock, so to speak. Maybe it's something we're genetically wired with, but I think we all wonder if we've done a good job in life, whether the legacy we'll leave behind is something our children and our children's children will look at with pride, whether the things we've done will matter to anyone down the line.

I don't know the exact time for other people, but I've been asking myself these questions for years. It's been intensified in the past three years--this month marks not only the joy and celebration of my daughter's birth, but also the three year anniversary of the day my heart stopped. Ironically enough, the paramedic who saved my life was profiled in the local paper five days ago--which was the exact anniversary of my heart going haywire! Funny little things, huh?

Anyway, my point is that I do ask myself those tough questions, and mostly, I just try to live a life that I believe I can be satisfied with and that hopefully, God will be pleased with, too. That's not to say I've never done any wrong! I've done wrong. Plenty of wrong. More wrong than I'd care to admit. But I've made my peace with most of them, asked for forgiveness when warranted, and offered forgiveness, too, even on the occasions it may not have been warranted.

I work hard to tell people in my life what's on my mind, things I think they need to hear, things that I desperately want them to hear and heed. I tell my daughter I love her every single day. I probably tell her more than ten times each day. And she tells me that she loves me too. I do the same for my husband. A few years ago when we hit a particularly rocky point in our marriage, he stormed out the door one morning for work without a good-bye kiss, without an "I love you," (even though I DID say it) and without even a wave good-bye. I stood in the doorway screaming at him as he drove away, "If something happens to either one of us today, I can leave this world with a clean conscience because I've said what I need to say!" I then proceeded to wave at my neighbor who was gaping at my very loud display before going back into the house to care for my baby daughter.

My husband said something months ago that struck a chord deep within me. He said, "I hope someday I can be as good of a husband as I am a father." I didn't respond to him at the time, though a few weeks later, I brought it up to him. He is a good father. A goofy father who sometimes bends the rules too much, but the exact sort of daddy I want my daughter to have. Despite some of his troubles in years past, he strives to be a role model--the man to which our daughter will compare all future men. As we talked about it, I finally told him what I'd been wanting to say for a while. It went something like this:

There's a song by John Mayer called "Say" and whenever I listen to it, I think about us. I know I talk too much sometimes, but I think it's better to say too much than to end up in a position where I can't say anything ever again. I don't need you to be as good of a husband as you are a father. If you would just ask me what I want in a husband, I'd tell you that all I need is for you to be the man I married. I need you to be the husband you vowed to be on the day we swore our lives to each other. I don't need you to be anything other than you. Yeah, we've had some hard times and things could have ended very badly, but we have a rare opportunity to move forward. I believe with every fiber of my being that happiness--real happiness, true happiness, peaceful happiness--exists only in what's real and true. And I think that the hard times we've had are real and true, but the good times are what stand out. So, just be you.

My advice to the world? Just be you. And tell people what you need to tell them.

More ramblings later this weekend on "Walking like a one man army/Fighting with the shadows in your head/Living out the same old moments/Knowing you'd be better off instead/If you could only/Say what you need to say..."

1 comment:

Catherine said...

Oh, Big Sister. You bring tears to my eyes sometimes.