This was the text message I received this afternoon. Well, actually, the full message was “same situation – opposite reaction – love it”. It was from one of my best friends, who I have the privilege of also beginning to work with (who I know I will be working with shoulder to shoulder, cheek to cheek, as my future continues). You see, this friend woke up this morning and said to herself, “I’ve been thinking loads lately about living with purpose….I woke up for the first time in ages today with no plans, no agenda, so I wrote a list of things I wanted to have done by the time I climbed back in the bed to ensure the day wasn’t wasted….I want more like that with life”.
Now typically this is my life. Typically, I have at least 20-50 ‘to do’s’ a day. I am always ‘working’ because my work is my life, my life is my work and I love it. But this last month I have started to switch off, turn my emails off and focus on my family because, if I didn’t, I would lose them. I have been blessed with the most amazing nuclear and extended families, so I would not want to lose them. My beautiful little girl, Annie, asked me recently to put my phone down because my phone was, ‘always talking with mummy’, so I did.
Since that day I have turned my phone off when I am not working and I vowed to give everything I had to what was in my hand. When I am with my babies, I am with my babies. When I am at work, I am at work. When I am with my husband, I am with my husband. And when I am with my mum and dad, I am with my mum and dad. Well, actually, truth be told my parents and siblings haven’t experienced this yet but they will do next weekend. Truth be told, my sister doesn’t know what it feels like to experience my undivided attention. My sister has spent her whole life with me being ‘distracted’, so she probably has no idea just how wonderful I know she is. My sister is a woman who I love like no other. My sister is a woman who totally rocks my world. My sister is a woman who I know nobody could ever compare to. My sister is a woman who I love so much, all day-every day, that I can feel it in every cell of my body. When I used to tell people how much I loved my sister, they used to say I would know true love when I had my children. Well, I have had two incredible children and I can tell you I love her just the same. No more, because it isn’t possible. No less, because I love her so much that it would impossible to lessen the love. She will, though. Know my undivided attention, I mean.
Nobody had experienced my undivided attention until recently. I made a conscious decision that my children would know my undivided attention and I would start to give my all to whatever was in my hand. Annie has noticed a difference and she vocally tells me so. Just yesterday she said, “I really love my patient mummy who looks at me all the time’. Because when you are distracted, impatience creeps in. When you are distracted, you don’t look directly in to somebody’s eyes. I have made incremental steps over the past month but today was my first day with the sole goal of being to enjoy friends and to ‘just be’. Annie, Zephy and I spent the whole day with a yummy friend of mine and her equally yummy boy. It was the first day that I have ever ‘just been’ with friends. Literally. My first day. How sad is that? We did nothing but eat, drink, chill out, play, chat and ‘just be’ (with prosecco in there for Hannah and I). My goal today was to experience relationship and teach Annie how to have fun all day long, loving life, how to develop relationship and have no agenda. Well, I achieved my goal. So in the end, the situation and reaction in that text message weren’t so different after all…..life if all about goals, aims and objectives and ensuring you get yours right.
Next weekend I intend to do the very same thing…… goal…. Teach my children how to have fun, fun, fun……… this is what Shelley would call, ‘pairing with reinforcement’. Well, I intend to become a pro…..