Recently I went on a little shopping adventure. There was a day I could shop all day, not so much anymore. I have never been a shoe or purse girl, instead Clearance Items and paper and office supplies. I can find sheer joy in a new tablet and a box of new crayons, markers, or Sharpie pens (especially the ones that don’t bleed through the paper).
Earlier this week I spoke about being in a pit, and I do believe we all have our ropes to get us out of those moments. I did a lot of praying, a lot of planning, a lot of writing, and a little retail therapy. In the course of 2 days (of note, one day was when I went to work and the other day I went to get oil changed – so not out of the way just to shop), I made the following purchases — the rope for the moment (:
- 4 cheap marker pens from Hallmark (at the store without the mug) one for each member of the family- purple for Mary, orange for Sam, blue for Jim, and lime green for Me. I remember my color coordinated calendars I use to do as I sat at dance class. I would see the color on the calendar and instantly know if Dentist was in purple it was Mary (:
- A cheap tablet for 96 cents – I remembered my Grandma Frazee use to use one similar – when you remove one page they all fall out and then you hold it together with a rubber band.
- A box of very bright Crayola markers so I could decorate / doodle on my cheap tablet – a little art therapy and could make my planning pages fun. I remembered doodling little flowers and squiggles as a stress release.
- 3 different calendars – I know what you are thinking – HOARDER – BUT, they were on clearance for 75% off. 1 was very unique large weekly calendar to hang in the kitchen lots of room to see the big picture. The other 2 were those page-a-day calendars. I remembered how much I loved them when I worked in an actual office. I would read them every day and then the next day rip it off and use it for my mini to-do list for the day. I got one for the car of positive thoughts to read to Mary and Sam each morning and could use for afternoon notes I think of when I pick them up from school. The other is a total brainless one with a little humor to set by my bed.
- Little Mary Engelbright notebook that said “If you don’t like something change it. If you can’t change it, then change the way you think about it.” – I remembered my mom, Mary, and the serenity prayer. But, this statement was so true for the moment.
- I bought a little bit of candy – a bag to share with work, a bag of Doves for the fortunes (: and to share with Sam and Mary, and a bag of root beer barrels because I remembered my Grandma Frazee always having them in her pocket
All of these items cost less than $20. I really thought they were random purchases at the time – but typing the list, I see that everything I purchased that day made me REMEMBER something or someone special to me. My pit was trying to deal with everyday things and not having those I miss the most to help me through. A therapist would probably say my issue was my missing my family and NOT the everyday things. My rope to get out of the pit was re-living memories and happy times. PREPARE to GRAB THE ROPE. I think it is vital to know the ropes that can get you out of a pit – for me this week it was retail therapy to re-live good memories and blogging. I was able to find things from my past to help me sort and solve the problems of the present. When I was in the pit with vision issues a year ago or my two pregnancy with complications – my rope was prayer, searching scripture, and reading to fill my soul. There are times that food has been my – but that too would be comfort foods of my mom and grandma’s (texas sheet cake, tuna casserole, biscuits baked with jelly, hot tea, sweet tea, fried leftover spaghetti, etc.). For some, the rope may be exercise. For my daughter, the rope is music.
But as I write, I am thinking, do I prepare our children with special memories for their rope? The things I pull from childhood were not vacations (we didn’t go on them but did go camping with the church), the candy from my grandmother’s apron, riding bikes with my neighbors, climbing tree, drinking hot tea with lots of sugar and real milk (I was raised on a farm), pulling taffy, the big homemade comforters, etc… What will our children pull away from childhood? I am very guilty about not having traditions, not forming the little memories, not making the most of the everyday. Maybe that is what is happening to younger generations — when I was in the pits I had memories to pull me out – what do many of them have? Broken homes, divorced parents, working parents – yes they may have many material things, but do they have memories… maybe that’s why they use addictions to pull them out. I have to help my children know what / who should be their rope… A whole new challenge.
In honor of Dr. Seuss – “Don’t cry because it’s over. Smile because it happened.” ( This week I didn’t cry because it was over – I smiled remembering all that happened.)
I Thessalonians 5:21b “Hold on to the good”