"When we are present to our loved ones, LOVE shows up." --Karen Lindvig, Senior Minister at Seattle Unity Church
Yesterday was one of those days that I was fully aware of how very difficult it is to be fully present. All day, no matter what I was doing it seemed, I was thinking of something else.
While making breakfast, I was thinking about writing my blog post. While writing my blog post, I was thinking about watching a movie. While shopping, I was thinking about taking a bath before dinner. While meditating before bed, I was thinking about what I wanted to get done the next day. It was a seemingly never-ending cycle of not being present.
Except for after dinner; after dinner I got it right for a little while.
The kids had been fighting since about five o'clock. Dinner is usually at six, but I could tell they were getting hungry so I tried to push things up a bit and after dinner things got better almost immediately, but there were still remnants of hard feelings between the two of them and exhaustion on my part.
After cleaning up, I made a cup of tea and sat down to read my book. Just as I did, my younger son asked me if I would play Cranium Brain Breaks with him.
[Public Service Announcement: If you have never played Cranium Brain Breaks, I highly recommend it as a family game. There are no winners and no losers - and thus NO TEARS or FIGHTS - because you are all working together against the clock to complete various tasks. It really is a lot of fun. Okay, back to our regularly scheduled blog post.]
"Oh," I thought, "I was really looking forward to reading my book....especially after all the fighting." So I said, "I will in a bit. Once I finish my tea."
Immediately I got the hit that I wouldn't. That something else would come up and he'd get tired of waiting and move on and then I'd be ready and he'd ask me to wait and I'd move on and we'd end up not playing together at all. This happens at our house more than I would like to admit.
So I asked myself, "WWLD?"
I knew the answer. Love would play Cranium. Right now.
So that's what I did. And guess what? Love showed up.
My younger son and I played for awhile and had a great time. And then my older son came downstairs and asked if he could play. And we all had a great time.
Our favorite challenge was trying to find five items each from around the house that made noise and bring them to the table before the time ran out. We had the best time finding, unplugging, and carting our various noise-makers to the table. Even my middle-schooler who is starting to roll his eyes at certain types of family fun, had a great time completing this task.
Later on, after the dog was walked and teeth were brushed we all crawled into bed together and I got to read my book. At that moment, I wasn't thinking about anything else.