A few Saturdays ago, I promised my kiddos that I'd take them swimming after all our jobs were done. There was the regular "drag your feet attitudes" and "multiple reminders to stay on task" and so it wasn't a surprise when it took us all morning. What did surprise us was to walk out the front door and find rain! The good old afternoon summer thunderstorm around here shouldn't surprise me anymore but I was not prepared on this specific day.
Well, I dropped the swimming pool bag and decided we can "swim" in the rain! I kept saying over and over..."come on, it'll be fun!" The only one that was game was Allison--she has that personality! That dear folks, is why I married her Dad! She's her father's child!!! Spontaneity is not foreign to those two people in my life for sure!
As I walked around in the rain with mascara dripping down my cheeks and yes, I was in my swimming suit in the front yard too, I thought about how I was a little sad that Spencer and Sarah got my more serious, rigid rule following self in them.
I guess, what I'm trying to say is that I've learned over the years and still need to be reminded from time to time, that it's okay to "drop the planned swimming pool bag" so to speak and run around in the rain. It's fun! It creates present living!
I find myself so wrapped up in my day to day schedules and planned out routines or even worse saying over and over again in my mind "some day in my next house, etc" that I forget that I can make things happen right now.
Let me give you an example. Ever since I was a little girl, I've dreamed of the mother I'd be and the house I would raise my family in. One of the things I've always wanted in my house was a swing. I've always wanted a unique, fun environment that my kids loved. Can't even tell you how many times in the last 7 years (since we purchased our first home) that I've told myself "in our next home I'll hang a swing in our big extra family room we're going to have."
I woke myself up about a year ago and realized, I can have a swing now. It may not be in a big extra family room that I'd like to come in my future, but I have a perfectly good hallway where a swing fits just great. We hung the swing! Guess where all the kids and their friends hang out...that swing! It's a little unique. It's pretty fun. It's that little dream I've had that I made happen. I dropped my "planned out swim bag" and used "the rain" I have right now!
Thomas S. Monson said:
"Sometimes we let our thoughts of tomorrow take up too much of today. Daydreaming of the past and longing for the future may provide comfort but will not take the place of living in the present."
Dreaming and planning do bring me comfort, but as I've brought my dreaming to my life now and let go of my rigid planning a little, I've found even more comfort in my present home and in present moments as a mother and wife.
It makes me think of a quote from The Music Man:
"You pile up enough tomorrows and you'll find you've collected a lot of empty yesterdays."