Wednesday, March 11, 2009

great expectations (verse 3)

There has been a lot of self reflection this past month.

It seems that when you're out running and you have nothing to do but run and walk run, various thoughts have a way of entering and circling about your brain. Various thoughts about life and discovering your purpose.

What am I doing with my life?

What do I hope to accomplish in my lifetime?

What kind of example do I want to set for our children?

How much torture can my legs withstand and will I
ever make it up that final hill home?

In addition to these thoughts, I'm watching our children grow up a little more everyday. And I'm hearing stories about my dad's failing health. And we're trying to figure out what we are going to do with our careers and whether or not we will relocate. Once I am due to return to work full-time in May, what will Charlie do? Will I become the primary breadwinner - or will I resign from my career and ... ?

It's such a huge decision that seems to be hovering over us.

And the closer I get to hearing about people, especially children, that have been impacted by cancer, the more my eyes are open to just how vulnerable - and fragile - we are.

Every day, I consider my health, my children's health, my husband's health. At this very moment, our arms and legs can move without pain. We can stand up and sit down and walk without assistance and are capable of eating just about any type of food and properly digesting it. We can breathe without medication or inhalers. We can hear and see, taste, touch and smell.

There are no physical issues that are weighing heavily on my mind.

Up until recently, I went through each day thinking about what I had to accomplish in order for that day to be considered "successful". Now, I go through each day reveling in the fact that we are healthy. If there is more laughter than crying, and if we are able to get outside and see nature, then I consider our day to be an overwhelming success.

The comment that I received yesterday didn't upset me in the least. In fact, it seemed as though some one put in to words the exact feelings that I've been having, myself.

What is the real reason that we are doing what we are doing?

At the risk of sounding totally sappy, I feel like the time any of us have here is extremely limited. No one knows what the future holds. I feel like it would be very easy for me to turn the other way and live my life in a bubble and pretend that my responsibilities end at the front door. I could very easily live my life in a bubble and hope that nothing bad ever happens to me or one of my children. But when I read posts like this one, I am painfully reminded that sometimes bad things do happen to very good people.

To innocent little people that had their whole lives to live.

The expectation that I have for myself is that I will do more. But this is where it gets a little tricky. Because to do more, I have to really put myself out there. And although this might come as an overwhelming shock to everyone, I really don't like being in the spotlight. I'd rather not advertise. I'd rather not speak to groups. I'd rather not ever be on television or in the newspaper. I'm one of those people that deteriorate in to a puddle of sweat under pressure.

Think of Broadcast News.

Infact, I feel extremely self conscious sending out random e-mails asking for various bloggers to help plug the work we are doing for cancer research because I feel like I am trying to promote me when, I'm actually trying to promote our fundraising. Not this blog or it's author.

There's a huge difference.

But I also recognize the power of the internet. Whenever I consider that the majority of the money that we have raised in the past month has come from extremely generous readers of this blog, I am humbled ... and amazed. If this blog can potentially help serve as a platform to draw attention to an important cause - is it wrong to use it that way?

Over the past 24 hours, I've been thinking about what is important to me and what are the big rocks in my jar of life. I'm sure if I spent some more time on this, I would include additional rocks, vary the dimensions, and see if I could make the "laundry" pebble any smaller.

But what I've decided is that one of the most important things in my life, an underlying theme to everything, is the desire to Do Good. And I think it's important to add, I'm not trying to "Do Good" to look good in anyone's eyes, other than my own. I want to be someone that my husband and children are proud of.

I want to be someone that I am proud of.

Yet in order to Do Good, I might have to put myself out there a lot more than I feel comfortable with. And what I've learned this past month is that there might be rejection. There might be a lot of phone calls and e-mails that are not returned. There might be a lot of phone calls and e-mails that straight out tell me no. High expectations that I place upon myself for success might be dashed at times. And sometimes, I might feel totally defeated.

But in order to Do Good, I've got to keep going in all the ways that I can, in every place that I can, at all the times that I can, for as long as I ever can.

And when the road that I am on feels a little too rocky (or should I say - when it feels like I'm on a rocky road) ... I have found that it helps tremendously to eat a bowl.

Thank you to everyone who wrote me an e-mail or left me a comment on my post, yesterday. If it takes me a while to write you back, please know I'm really so thankful for all of you.


  1. I lurk, but rarely comment. Just wanted to let you know that you inspire me...when I grow up, I want to be more like you (although I'm pretty far ahead of you chronologically, as I'm 43!)

  2. I read all the posts. I think what this person was saying was don’t take it all so personally and don’t forget your family. Don’t forget the important things and you can be proud of just being just a good mom. You are doing great things. Keep your chin up.

  3. I think more people should be outward thinking like you... I know I struggle with that. good luck with your upcoming decisions... I will be praying you find peace about them!

  4. I wanted to post yesterday but my dial up was not allowing it. We all know that someone has it worse then us, you are doing a fantastic thing! you have a big following and if you can raise money that is awesome! Il ove your blog because at least you say some real things that happen in everyday life, I only have one and have been greatful on quite a few occasions that when they put back 4 embreyo's on try 4 and 5 that it didn't work (well I dont'kow about hat but now we have a beautiful little girl from Guatemala, but I'm still thankful she's not triplets alot fo the time)
    you shouldn't feel guilty that you ahve alot on your plate even though its not life threatening its still yours to deal with. hang in there and good luck try to figure out everything youa re going to do it sounds like alot of possible changes.

  5. I read your blog and I'm always "amazed" at your energy. I have one toddler and work outside the home and feel like I'm always trying to catch up. Then you're here with 4 kids, working out, doing this blog, keeping your house clean (I've seen the pics... clean in my book) AND trying to raise money for a good cause. I can't even find time to take my cans in to be recycled.

    Keep up the good work!

    PS: How's the Nikon SLR? Did you get it fixed? I'm going to ask for an SLR for Christmas and was so saddened when you posted that your's is broken.

  6. I cannot believe that the American Idol "Rock" is not as big as the sleep "Rock." Let's get serious here! LOL! YOU R O C K !

  7. Remember that charity begins at home. I know you want to take on the world to help, but think about your little corner and work from there. Enjoy every day and live in it --not in yesterday or tomorrow---it is called the NOW!
    We do not know what the future holds, so relax and enjoy.
    Your family needs you so enjoy them every day.

  8. You are an amazing person - someone I admire immensely. I feel like I know you just through your blog - I wish I did know you. Please keep doing what you're doing - most of us are inspired by you!!! Thank you for all the good you do. I strive to be more like you.