I am a routine follower.
I am task oriented.
I have always believed that the reward should come after the task.
Monday the sun came out after a couple of days of cold rainy weather. We had all been a little stir crazy from our inability to venture outside the house and given it was a long weekend, even school and work couldn’t save us from us.
I had worked on a variety of tasks around the house all weekend — cleaning out drawers and closets, laundry, grocery shopping, vacuuming. When Monday finally came and the sun popped out, I still needed to wash some sheets and fold some clothes and clean some floors.
Something came over me though.
I stopped all my tasks.
I packed a picnic.
I decided to take my two youngest kids to the lake (my oldest is smart enough to have made plans with friends). This is very unusual for me. I have a bad habit of needing to get everything looking the right way — when you do that, sometimes you can miss out on life. And who really ever cares about the appearance? Isn’t it what’s real that everyone really cares about?
We loaded up the car and drove the two miles to a nice spot on the lake — two miles to a spot I had never taken the time to visit in the four years that I’ve lived in this house. It’s funny. I remember when we were looking for a lot to build a house on — this lot seemed ideal and one of the reasons was its close proximity to the lake…the lake I’ve never taken my kids to because something always needed to be done.
At the lake, we had a picnic, we saw some seagulls (yes, in Tennessee — I’m sure they have a different name but we went with seagulls), we (attempted to) feed some ducks, we found some snail shells, we skipped rocks, we watched the boats, we went on a hike, we laughed, we held hands.
After the lake, we drove to the bookstore and had hot cocoa and looked at some books (and toys) and bought a few things.
When we finally made it home, the dinner I had planned on making didn’t have time to cook so I changed my plans and no one cared. The laundry I didn’t have time to put away waited until the next day and no one cared. The floor that didn’t get vacuumed waited until the next day and no one cared.
The thing that gets remembered… the thing that becomes a memory, is the day at the lake.
We all have to just pause sometimes to see what really matters. Pause to make sure that we focus on the things that really are important. Pause to create the memories that will be the focus of tomorrow’s stories.