How Do I Not Waste This Ordinary Day?

According to my calculations, on June 23rd of this year, (my 53rd birthday), I will have lived approximately 19,345 days. The great majority of those days I don’t remember. There are a few, May 25, 1983 for example, when we brought Big Son ASIJ home, and January 14, 2000 when Little Miss ASIJ was born and January 13, 1998 when I saw face to face the love of my life Mr. ASIJ, that I remember crystal clear! And a few others when good things and not so good things happened. But the rest, well…one day just fades into another and now most of my life is just a blur of days.

How do I not let my days just fade into each other and become a blur? For the past few days I’ve been asking myself this very question. How DO I do this?

Here’s a few things I’ve come up with:

1. Take more pictures.
Nothing brings a day to mind more clearly for me than looking at pictures. Times I’ve long forgotten spring clear as buttered biscuits in my mind when I see pictures of family reunions, friends getting together, and days of fun and laughter. Don’t forget to date the pictures!

2. Write about it.
Start a journal and write something each day. Even if its just one sentence. What was the weather like? Who did you see and talk to on this day? What happened today to make this day different from every other day? Oh, you’re not a writer? Doesn’t matter. Write about your days anyway.

3. Live in the present but don’t forget the good times.
Sometimes I just need to talk about the past to keep a good time alive or to keep alive in my heart someone precious but long since gone. Note: DON’T talk about the bad times – those days NEED to fade away! Don’t rehash how someone did you wrong…let that wrong doing die a quick death!

4. Talk to people…really LISTEN.
Sometimes people just need to talk about their days so they’ll be remembered. Never let a chance go by to let someone make their day special by telling or recalling their days. Everyone has a story, no matter how insignificant it may seem at the time. Like books, don’t judge a person by their cover. Everyone has a soul. Everyone has a purpose for being here. Everyone matters.

5. Make a memory ON PURPOSE.
You can take a day, any day, and do something extraordinary. This will make it special for everyone involved! Get excited about life. Point out that frog hopping across the road. Ohh and ahh over that beautiful butterfly. Make a big deal out of God’s blessings we see and touch everyday. Yes, some people will think you’re nuts, but they’ll remember ๐Ÿ™‚

6. Start new rituals.
Rituals come and rituals go (in my life anyway). But they make my days so special. And of all the rituals that have come and gone, I have a tendency to remember each one with a smile! Now I’m not talking about big elaborate rituals that take time and money (but those can be fun too), I’m talking about those little things you do everyday. There are rituals we do before bed, when we wake in the morning, when we sit down with our families for a meal ALL TOGETHER AT THE DINNER TABLE. Little Miss ASIJ LOVES doing and saying the same things over and over, sometimes like a movie script. She loves it, I love it and it makes our days special.

7. Learn something new ~ start a new hobby. Be creative.
Our creative and imaginative side helps here to make special times. When we create something new, we fill a space that was empty. We leave a mark. We create and leave behind a legacy.

8. Get off the sidewalk.
I read this blog from Chris Guillebeau of the Art of Non-Conformity the other day about life being risky. Sometimes it is – live it anyway! Don’t be stupid…be safe…but doing something you wouldn’t ordinarily do will surely make the day not so ordinary.

In reality, there are no ordinary days. All our days are miraculous blessings. Never take even one, no matter how ordinary or boring it seems, for granted.

Sometimes the road our life takes is best lived moment to moment. Be present in each moment, don’t sleepwalk you’re life away. What you do this moment affects the next moment and the next one. So really, our days are made of miraculous moments. We have no way of knowing if we’re going to be around tomorrow – make each moment special. Create a life filled with extraordinary moments.

Never waste even one day. Find something about that day worth remembering. No one else may find moments of your day very memorable, but if you do ~ that’s what matters. Even if you’re alone…dance, sing, find beauty, create beauty.

Risk.

What I Love About You

The main thing I love about YOU is how unique you are. And I love the way you demonstrate this uniqueness. By the clothes you wear, the way you talk, that quirky smile, the laugh that no one in this world can imitate.

YOU are the only one that can think your thoughts ~ those very imaginative and creative thoughts. You know the ones I’m talking about. When you wake up in the middle of the night with an idea that no one else has thought of. Only you can do that! And only you can get up out of bed and begin the process of making that idea a new reality for all of us ๐Ÿ™‚

YOU are the only one that can do those things you do. The way you walk across the floor, the way you tell a joke, the way you throw your head back and laugh so hard that tears roll down your cheeks, the way you love people with your whole heart and soul! Believe me when I say there is no one else like YOU and I’m so glad there is a YOU in the world and in my life. I can’t even begin to imagine what my life would be like if you weren’t here.

I love how only you can show your creativeness in THAT way. Nobody else can do that. And so if you don’t do it, it won’t be shared with the world in just THAT particular way. What a sad loss that would be.

The world was changed the day YOU were born. The course of history was thrown a curve ~ a good curve. You changed people’s lives that day. You have probably saved lives and YOU don’t even know it. You have no idea how life would have been if you hadn’t been born. Thank goodness for YOU!

Today, think about how great and wonderful you are. Think about what a miracle you are. Think about what you AND ONLY YOU can bring to the world ~ then go out and do it!

***** This post is dedicated to Patti Digh, author and life changer. She couldn’t have changed my life more if she’d come over to my house and slapped me!! Her uniqueness is a most precious source of change and comfort in my life. Bless you Patti for showing me that life is, indeed, a verb.

Now I Lay Me Down To Sleep…

Mr. ASIJ made me think again. I hate it (but seriously love it) when he does that. I don’t know if I’m thinking about what he wanted me to think about but this little children’s prayer keeps rolling through my head.

Now I lay me down to sleep,
I pray the Lord my soul to keep.
If I should die before I wake,
I pray the Lord my soul to take.

I was very uncomfortable saying this prayer as a child. I didn’t want to think about dying during the night. I never taught this prayer to Little Miss ASIJ because I didn’t want to be the one responsible for teaching fear to her in any way. But I DID say it as a child. And was quite frequently afraid to close my eyes…afraid it would be the last time.

But what if…

What if I did die tonight?
What if this were my last Christmas?
What if this were my last New Year?
What if this were my last day on earth?

Tomorrow would my family know how much I loved them? Do they know they are truly my heart and soul?

Did I improve anyone’s life today?

Did I do anything I’ll be remembered favorably for?

Did I spend time with Mr. ASIJ and Little Miss ASIJ? We were together in the same house but most of the time in different rooms. The happiest moments of my day were when we all sat down together at the dinner table and had spaghetti. And the few short moments I spent in the kitchen before dinner with Little Miss ASIJ while she filled the salt and pepper shakers for me. (Remember…its the little things that add up to “a life”).

What will their memories of me be like?

Will they smile or reminisce about how I was off in my own little world all day?

Was I PRESENT in their life today?

I rarely make New Year’s Resolutions. But I think I have stumbled across some New Year’s Revelations.

I want to live a life worth remembering.
I want to inspire.
I want to improve someone’s life, even if its only to show them there’s always hope.
I want my family to know without a doubt that I loved them unconditionally in the best way that I knew how.
I want them to know they were more important than any thing in this world.
I want to leave something more behind than just a shadow of a person.
I want to be remembered with a smile, not a sigh.
I don’t want anyone to be sad that I’m gone (we’ll meet again), but be glad that I was here.

It’s after midnight and in a few short hours I’ll be getting ready for another Monday at work after a three day holiday weekend. What if this was my last holiday season with my family? Can I go to bed tonight with a contented heart?

No, I will pray for another day.

I will pray for another chance.