Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Gift of Presence

Today is my birthday.  I usually love my birthday.  Love. It.  I revel in the celebration.  I eat tons of cake and ice cream and junky carbs as I can.

This year is a little different.  It’s been a difficult six months.  I’ve been closely examining my personalboundaries in regards to bullying.  I’ve been working hard on accepting myself and honoring my limits.  I’ve been putting a lot of effort into creating the best version of myself so I can be good to others.

It’s exhausting, really.

And needless to say, it has not been easy.  I know that one of my gifts from the Babes is the new No Doubt CD.  (Thanks for the not-so-obvious hint, Thomas)!  I am super excited to open it later tonight, but I have to say that my kids have already given me the best gift that has transformed me in each and every way.

The gift of presence. 

I am so incredibly thankful for this gift of living in the moment.  They take this awesome gift for granted because they are constantly living in the moment.  But as a planner, living in the moment has been a challenge.  It means taking the time to be quiet and value what is happening right here, right now.  And because of this, I not only see the beauty of the moment, but I feel it in a way I never had experienced before.

When Thomas wants to cuddle on the couch with me and watch Doc McStuffins or when Marie wants to hold my hand as we walk to the bus stop, I quiet that voice that says laundry needs to get done or we need to hurry before the bus comes.  All these little moments add up to one, big life and I don’t want them to slip away.

But even more than that, living in the moment with my kids has given me strength to protect my priorities with great intensity.  This is not easy, and it’s not like I live in this Zen state all the time (who does with a three year old?), but I can say that my joyful moments are more joyful.

I am thankful to these little teachers for inspiring me to create the life I’ve always wanted.

I can’t say that I *love* the idea of the smile lines that seem a little deeper around my eyes, but I can say with great certainty that I love the sense of strength I get from my gift of presence.

What do you like most about your birthday?


Unknown said...

Simply beautiful. I miss those times with my kids...I guess those moments are just different now. And I have Zoe to keep me "in the moment".
Thanks for sharing...and Happy Birthday!!

Erin Janda Rawlings said...

Thanks so much! I appreciate that! xoxo

New York Mama said...

Beautiful post and beautiful pics! Living in the moment is probably one of the most important things my family and I strive for. It isn't always easy and we aren't always successful, but that way always gives us the most blessings in our lives. All of us running out in the rain in the middle of cooking dinner or dropping everything to play a game of cards with my teen son will be in our hearts long after we remember schedules and chores. The way of striving to be in the moment that you describe with your family should bring so much happiness and joy in all your lives always!!!